To help its members realize the benefits of electric vehicle (EV) ownership, New Hampshire Electric Cooperative (NHEC) has become the first electric utility in the state to offer deeply discounted rates to members who charge their EVs during off-peak hours.
EV ownership is on the rise and most auto manufacturers are currently offering or plan to offer multiple electric vehicle models. EV drivers can benefit from increased efficiency over fossil fuel powered vehicles, as well as lower maintenance costs. NHEC members purchasing or leasing EVs now can also choose an off-peak charging option to further reduce operating costs.
“The auto industry is changing rapidly and we see tremendous potential in the growth of EV ownership,” said Craig Snow, NHEC Vice President of Member Services. “At the same time, it’s important to manage this new source of electric load in ways that benefit Co-op members, the regional electric grid and the environment.”
The goal of NHEC’s off-peak charging program is to incentivize EV charging during times when regional electric demand is low, thus avoiding the need to build new generation facilities and further strain the New England electricity transmission grid to meet the added demand for power, Snow added.
As part of its new program, NHEC is also offering rebates of up to $300 to residential members who install Level 2 EV charging stations (240 volts) in its service territory. Rebates will help offset the cost of installing a second electric meter that records EV charging usage and enables members to take advantage of the lower off-peak charging rate. Rebates of up to $1,000 are also available for NHEC members who purchase or lease qualified EVs. Off-peak rates are effective for EV charging only. Household usage will still be separately metered and billed at NHEC’s basic residential rate.
Effective May 1, 2018, the off-peak rate for EV charging will be 8.7 cents per kWh, which is 42% lower than the basic residential rate (effective May 1, 2018) of 14.9 cents per kWh. Off-peak hours are 9 p.m. to 7 a.m. Monday through Friday, and also all hours on weekends and holidays. The rate for on-peak charging will be 22.5 cents per kWh. Rates will be adjusted in May and November each year to reflect the seasonal change in the price of wholesale power.
For participating members who limit their EV charging to off-peak hours, the potential savings is significant. The owner of an EV like the Chevrolet Bolt who drives 16,000 miles a year can save about $20 a month by charging during off-peak times.
NHEC members who already have a Level 2 EV charger installed in NHEC service territory are also eligible for the rebate if they sign up for off-peak charging and install a dedicated meter.
Visit the EV page on the NHEC website at www.nhec.com/take-charge-save for program details and applications, or call NHEC Member Solutions at 1-800-698-2007. Funds are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.