HECO Companies to Implement EV Pilot Program

The Hawaii Public Utilities Commission has authorized three affiliated electric utilities (Hawaiian Electric Company, Hawaii Electric Light Company, Inc., and Maui Electric Company, Ltd. [the HECO companies]) to implement a pilot program designed to provide the utilities with the tools necessary for developing the requisite infrastructure for encouraging the growth and viable development of the electric vehicle (EV) market. More specifically, the HECO companies were permitted to (1) expand the availability of and access to EV charging stations throughout all three of the utilities’ service territories for use by EV end users; and (2) promote the charging of EV batteries during off-peak periods through discounted time-of-use energy rates. The commission noted that inasmuch as the rates do not fully recover total allocated fixed costs, they will result in subsidization by non-participating ratepayers. Given that scenario, the commission supported provisions limiting the number of participants and facilities as well as the duration of the pilot. (Transmittal Nos. 13-07, 13-08, Decision & Order No. 31338, Hawaii P.U.C.) For more analysis, subscribe to URN. http://www.fortnightly.com/utility-regulatory-news-0