Low Energy: Estimating Electric Vehicle Electricity Use

16 Pages Posted: 8 Feb 2021

See all articles by Fiona Burlig

Fiona Burlig

University of Chicago

James Bushnell

University of California, Davis - Departments of Economics and Agricultural Resource Economics

David Rapson

University of California, Davis

Catherine Wolfram

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Sloan School of Management; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Date Written: February 8, 2021

Abstract

We provide the first at-scale estimate of electric vehicle (EV) home charging. Previous estimates are either based on surveys that reach conflicting conclusions, or are extrapolated from a small, unrepresentative sample of households with dedicated EV meters. We combine billions of hourly electricity meter measurements with address-level EV registration records from California households. The average EV increases overall household load by 2.9 kilowatt-hours per day, less than half the amount assumed by state regulators. Our results imply that EVs travel 5,300 miles per year, under half of the US fleet average. This raises questions about transportation electrification for climate policy.

Suggested Citation

Burlig, Fiona and Bushnell, James and Rapson, David and Wolfram, Catherine, Low Energy: Estimating Electric Vehicle Electricity Use (February 8, 2021). University of Chicago, Becker Friedman Institute for Economics Working Paper No. 2021-17, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3781971 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3781971

Fiona Burlig (Contact Author)

University of Chicago ( email )

5757 S. University Ave
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James Bushnell

University of California, Davis - Departments of Economics and Agricultural Resource Economics ( email )

United States

David Rapson

University of California, Davis ( email )

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Apt 153
Davis, CA 95616
United States

Catherine Wolfram

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Sloan School of Management ( email )

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Cambridge, MA 02142
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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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