Nissan and EDF Energy partner to advance low carbon transport

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French-owned utility firm EDF has set out a plan to become Europe’s largest provider of charging stations for electric vehicles by 2022. 

Jean-Bernard Levy, Head of EDF, claims the company aims to operate 75,000 charging stations on the continent, forecasting that electric vehicles will make up roughly 30% of all newly-sold cars by 2035. 

The company joins a growing wave of firms tapping into the fast-growing electric market. 

Levy said EDF had plans ‘to become the uncontested leader in electric mobility in Europe by 2022’.

EDF Energy, reportedly the UK’s largest producer of low carbon electricity, has also announced that it is joining forces with Nissan to work on a number of projects that will support the adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) and energy generation and storage solutions.

The first joint project will see the partners explore the business case for recycling retired batteries from Nissan LEAF vehicles (pictured) into commercial battery storage. The system would see electricity stored in the batteries and released back to the grid using EDF Energy’s PowerShift to react quickly to demand side response (DSR) initiatives. 

Storage systems offer a lower carbon solution compared to relying on coal and gas power stations to meet peaks of electricity demand on the grid. The combined system will be trialled to see how it can support on site generation, greater control and flexibility over energy use, and provide additional revenue streams.

The agreement also covers 
future collaboration across smart charging, batteries, decentralised generation and grid integration over the coming 12 months.

Already this year, there are more lithium-ion batteries being installed in EVs than into consumer electronics, and demand for electric mobility is expected to increase, equating to millions of used EV batteries being available for the energy storage market, notes EDF. The used batteries have as much as 70% of their original capacity and will still have more than 10 years of remaining life.

Nissan LEAF
Photo: Nissan/EDF

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