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Pilot providing valuable insights to drive regional Electric Vehicle use

19 February 2020

  • Horizon Power undertaking 12-month pilot of Electric Vehicles in Esperance and Broome to learn about the vehicles, impacts on the regional energy network and test user behaviour.
  • Hyundai Kona 100% electric vehicles selected due to long range driving capability – up to 449 kilometres – making them suited to driving in regional WA.

Horizon Power has launched a 12-month pilot to learn about Electric Vehicles, user charging behaviour and the impact these vehicles will have on the Western Australian regional energy network into the future.

The pilot is part of Horizon Power’s strategy to deliver energy solutions for Western Australian regional communities and supports a Memorandum of Understanding signed by the State Government in 2018 agreeing to identify opportunities to accelerate electric vehicle introduction in WA.

Horizon Power Chief Executive Officer Stephanie Unwin said the pilot is one way Horizon Power is working to prepare for the next wave of cleaner, greener transport and the energy solutions needed to support the transition.

“It is clear that electric and hydrogen vehicles are the future of transport. While the timing is uncertain, local adoption of electric vehicles is expected to be strong and the State has signalled its commitment to supporting the transition,” Ms Unwin said.

“We need to better understand the opportunities and requirements to prepare our power networks to support their introduction.”

The pilot will see two 22 kilowatt AC electric fast charging stations installed at the Horizon Power depots in Esperance and Broome, and slower 7 kilowatt AC chargers in the homes of the two Horizon Power employees participating in the pilot.

Horizon Power is also asking people to answer the 2020 Question – “Will regional WA be ready for electric vehicles?” People can share their thoughts at the2020question.com.au.

Ends

Additional information:

  • The trial participants will drive a Hyundai Kona 100% electric vehicle for a year to gather insights. Participants were selected due to the differences in their profiles – from locations to family dynamics.
  • The Hyundai Kona electric vehicle operates with a 64 kilowatt per hour battery pack and 150 kilowatt electric drive motor.
  • Depending on the type of charging infrastructure used, the Kona can be charged to 80% capacity in just under an hour (54 minutes) using a 100 kilowatt DC fast charger, or to 100% capacity in 9.5 hours using an AC wall-box charger typically installed in homes.
  • Horizon Power is currently partnering with the Australian Electric Vehicle Association for a crowd-funding campaign to install a small network of 50 kilowatt DC rapid chargers linking Perth and Esperance via the Wheatbelt.
  • The campaign is working to raise $350,000 by April 2020This will help fund the first milestone – the installation of a 50 kilowatt DC rapid charger in a town along the route.
  • Donations to the crowd-funding campaign can be made at Chuffed.org/project/EVhwy

About Horizon Power

Horizon Power is the West Australian Government’s regional and remote power provider. We are passionate about what we do, and strive to ensure our customers receive safe and reliable power to their homes, businesses and communities.

Our people and their families live in many of the regional and remote communities they service and support. Spanning some 2.3 million square kilometres, this makes us responsible for the largest geographical catchment of any Australian power provider.

We operate 38 power systems delivering power to more than 110,000 homes, communities and businesses. This includes 32 microgrids tailored to meet the unique needs of some of the most isolated and remote communities in the world.

Horizon Power is making significant investments in developing its renewable energy capability and expertise. It currently has a number of initiatives underway exploring new and innovative ways of providing our customers with more sustainable, affordable power.

For more information visit www.horizonpower.com.au