As Australia transitions into the new electric world, individuals and businesses need to start to think about how big this shift actually will be. Change can be challenging, but if planned well, it will be a great opportunity for those that start now.
Below is a very compelling forecast model that depicts electric vehicle (EV) sales in Australia.
Data predicts significant household peaks in electricity charging demand between 7pm to 10pm after electric vehicles have been used all day, which will in turn cause major problems for the network. This load is the equivalent of adding an extra stove to every house. The average house charger will be 7KW single phase or 22KW three phase.
What does this mean?
For a family with 3 cars, one of these will be electric within 7 years. In fact, a recent survey resulted in 60% of people indicating that their next car will be electric. Looking at your own business and employees, how many cars are in your carpark right now? How much extra electricity load will a shift in more EVs add to your energy bills?
A study from Master Electricians Australia on their EV fleet, indicated that 1kWh of Electricity is worth approximately 0.6L of fuel (the equivalent of filling up a tank at 12 cents per litre). With fuel costs currently at $2 – $2.30 a litre, this could mean a saving of around $120 per week on a 60L tank.
The costs of EVs are now price competitive with conventional cars over their lifecycle. Your energy costs will be transferred from the petrol station to your electricity bill. However, it will be a lot less overall and much better for the environment.
Smart users of EVs have already changed their patterns to shop, work, eat or go to the gym where they can continuously top up their EV’s for free during the day. For example, we have seen Coles make steps by installing free EV chargers at some of their locations. Right now, it may not seem like there are many electric vehicles, but the landscape will look different in just 3 years’ time with 1 in every 10 vehicles being electric, and in 7 years’ time 1 in 3 electric. These numbers show that even in a regional town like Townsville could have up to 25,000 EV’s in 7 years. That would fill the entire Queensland Country Bank Stadium.
Super EV Highway
Australia is quickly developing an EV superhighway for fast chargers. These 350KW chargers can charge your car in 20 mins. This gives you time to have lunch or have a coffee while you are on a long trip. While it is not recommended to regularly use fast chargers as it can reduce battery life in your car, it certainly does the trick for road trips. Download apps such as Chargefox or GoEVIE to see where you can book in advance and charge your car while you have lunch.
Smart Businesses and Early Adopters
Motels, Hotels, AirBnB, Resorts – Will see the first wave and demand. Travelers with EVs will only stay where there are charging stations. If you want to attract Government workers and corporates, this is the opportunity. Large business around Australia are under extreme pressure to change their fleets to electric to meet their Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG).
Petrol Stations – Petrol stations are installing Fast Charger networks to attract not only fuel customers but electric customers and turning their stations into cafes to further attract them.
Shopping Centres – Incentivising retail customers by having free charging stations at shopping centres will provide yet another reason to attract more people. Coles was an early adopter of this. Furthermore, EV parking is always closet to the entrance and is seen as ‘premium parking’.
Restaurants and Cafes – Not only will you get premium parking, your car will be charging while you eat. Places like Hungry Jacks are partnering with Fast Chargers, as they know they can attract customers to their outlets for 20 minutes whilst their car is super charged.
Clubs, Sporting fields, events – Larger clubs, sporting fields and event spaces with room for more car parks, will have to have EV chargers earlier than most.
Attract and Retain Staff
People will want to charge their vehicles at work and not at home. With new bi-directional car chargers, you can charge your car for free during the day using solar power at work and run your house with your car at home. This is what the future home will look like.
Business that embrace this change to electric vehicles, allowing them to charge their vehicle for free at work will not only attract, but hold on to their best staff. Furthermore, the more cars that we can charge during the day, the huge load it will take off the Grid at night.
Is your lease coming up for renewal?
It is critical that the next building that you lease has a landlord that is willing to work with you on changes to how we use electricity. One EV charger is the equivalent of an extra 7KW air-conditioner to your load. Will the new EV loads move you from a Small User to a Large User? The costs are significant.
The future building must have:
- Grid capacity for EVs
- Abundant room for Solar
- Space for EV Chargers.
If your current building does not have this, it is important to start negotiating with your landlord or looking at other lease options.
There good news is, there are options to insulate against the future large electricity increases with products such as Juice Mobile. They are cyclone rated mobile solar systems that are designed to match your lease and cost $0 Capital to install.
What you need to be doing right now:
- Is your current building EV ready? (Solar, Car parking, Grid capacity).
- What is your yearly energy usage and will EVs move you to a large user?
- How many of your staff or customers will need EV Chargers?
If you have any questions or need help with planning, please reach out to our team here.
Founder & Manager of Horan & Bird Energy. Director of Master Electricians Australia. John has played a key entrepreneurial role in the transformation of the Energy Landscape in Queensland having founded Horan & Bird in 2004 and building it to a $35 Million Business. The business was then sold, repurchased and merged with Juice Capital in 2020. Juice Capital own one of the largest renewable energy funds in Australia and allow customers to go solar and batteries for no up front capital through Power Purchase Agreements.