Permalink to Electrification

Power sector decarbonization benefits not just the power sector, but can drive down emissions in the transportation, buildings, and industry sectors through electrification. Electrification is the process of converting end uses from fossil-fuel powered to electric, including vehicles, HVAC appliances, and industrial machinery. Economics and climate goals will drive more decisions to retire dirty coal plants and replace that electricity demand with renewable energy. Policymakers will need to make a concerted effort to take advantage of this momentum in other sectors.

Replacing fossil fuels with electricity widens the purview of electricity regulators. Rates will need to be designed with a much more diverse set of customers and uses in mind. Utility programs will need to incent new customer adoption and behavior. Policymakers at the city, state, and federal levels will need to coordinate this massive fuel-switching endeavor.

Additionally, electrification is not unidirectional: Efforts to electrify end uses will affect the grid by changing electricity demand. The future of the electricity grid will be influenced by electrification, as well as complementary policies to make demand more flexible, which will keep costs down.

Energy Innovation is currently developing an electrification roadmap to guide policymakers on electrification across and between sectors. Please feel free to reach out at power@nullenergyinnovation.org to inquire about this work product before its full release.



A 1.5°C NDC For Climate Leadership For The United States

New Energy Policy Simulator modeling shows a relatively small set of policies to achieve a 50 percent reduction in U.S. emissions by 2030 relative to 2005 levels could increase U.S. GDP by $570 billion per year in 2030 and by $920 billion in 2050 and create 3.2 million new job-years in 2030 and nearly 5 million new job-years in 2050, while avoiding more than 45,000 premature deaths and 1.3 million asthma attacks annually by 2050.


Accelerating Clean, Electrified Transportation by 2035: Policy Priorities

Electrifying every new car and truck sold in the U.S. by 2035 would save consumers $2.7 trillion and create more than 2 million jobs by 2035, but these benefits will only be realized with greater policy ambition including strong national fuel economy and tailpipe emissions standards for all vehicle classes.


Accelerating Electrified Transportation By 2035

New research shows not only is it technologically feasible to electrify every new car and truck sold in the U.S. by 2035, it would also save consumers $2.7 trillion and support more than 2 million jobs, but these benefits will not be realized without smart policy.

Virginia Energy Policy Simulator Insights: Virginia Clean Economy Act, 1.5°C Pathway Scenario

New modeling using the Virginia Energy Policy Simulator finds the Virginia Clean Economy Act will cut statewide emissions nearly 35 percent by 2050, but strategic policies in the building, industry, and transportation sectors would put Virginia on a 1.5° pathway, generate 12,000 job-years and increase state GDP by more than $3.5 billion per year.


Increasing Electric Vehicle Charging Access At Multi-Unit Dwellings: Workshop Summary Report

This report summarizes proposed solutions from leading experts to address the primary barriers to increasing electric vehicle charging access for multi-unit dwellers in California to reduce emissions while also promoting equity.


Clean Trucks, Big Bucks

Modeling of California’s Advanced Clean Trucks rule shows it will generate more than $7 billion in savings through 2040, yielding tremendous public health benefits valued at $9 billion dollars. When using a battery cost closer to those observed for passenger vehicles, these savings rise to more than $12 billion through 2040.


Natural Gas: A Bridge To Climate Breakdown

The rush to build more than 60 gigawatts of natural gas plants and pipelines risks tens of billions in investment and a trillion dollars in consumer costs by 2030. This report outlines these evolving risks for shareholders, lays out investor strategies to accelerate the clean energy transition, and shows how clean energy cuts utility investment risks from over-reliance on natural gas while providing new growth opportunities supporting decarbonization.




How To Reach U.S. Net Zero Emissions By 2050: Decarbonizing Transportation

Energy Innovation has identified the policy pathway to economy-wide U.S. net zero emissions by 2050: This article explores transportation decarbonization.

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How To Reach U.S. Net Zero Emissions By 2050: Decarbonizing Buildings

Energy Innovation has identified the policy pathway to economy-wide U.S. net zero emissions by 2050: This article explores building decarbonization.

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Building Electrification Could Add Hundreds Of Millions Of Batteries To The Grid

EI’s Sonia Aggarwal outlines how building electrification could add hundreds of millions of thermal batteries to the U.S. grid.

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As Cities Begin Banning Natural Gas, States Must Embrace Building Electrification Via Smart Policy

EI’s Amanda Myers says city bans on natural gas mean state regulators must embrace building electrification through smart policy decisions.

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How States Can Overcome The Looming EV Charging Infrastructure Gap

EI’s Amanda Myers says 88% of the biggest U.S. cities lack the EV charging infrastructure to meet demand forecasts, but says California’s utility deployment holds lessons for other states.

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How States Can Overcome The Looming EV Charging Infrastructure Gap: New York, Maryland, Michigan

EI’s Amanda Myers says New York, Maryland, and Michigan are helping overcome the EV infrastructure charging gap through utility programs.

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Four U.S. Electric Vehicle Trends To Watch In 2019

EI’s Amanda Myers says four major trends will determine if the U.S. electric vehicle market accelerates or hits a roadblock in 2019.

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Beneficial Electrification: How to Make it Work

EI’s Mike O’Boyle outlines how widespread beneficial electrification requires anticipating and removing technical and institutional barriers to take full advantage of technological trends.

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Electric Buses Can Save America’s Local Governments Billions: China’s Showing Us How It’s Done

EI’s Silvio Marcacci highlights the trend of America’s largest cities converting their bus fleets from diesel to electric buses because they could save billions in fuel costs, and says China may hold the key to electrifying U.S. bus fleets.

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Are Electric Vehicle Charging Corridors The Best Way To Spend Volkswagen’s Dieselgate Billions?

EI’s Mike O’Boyle asks if electric vehicle charging corridors are the best way to spend billions flowing into U.S. EV infrastructure from Volkswagen’s Dieselgate settlement.

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Charging An Electric Vehicle Is Far Cleaner Than Driving On Gasoline, Everywhere In America

EI’s Silvio Marcacci says new research shows charging an electric vehicle in the U.S. is far cleaner than driving on gasoline, regardless of where it charges.

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Five Ways Utilities Can Gain From Building Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure

EVs are accelerating across America, but they won’t reach their potential unless utilities can build sufficient charging infrastructure. A new Rocky Mountain Institute report lays out a suite of policies for regulators to help utilities move from gas to grid.

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Getting the Most Out of Vehicle Electrification for Both Customers and the Grid

EVs are on the path to becoming mainstream, thanks to strong policy support and rapid battery cost declines. The next key driver is the role utilities will play: If managed well, EVs are a massive opportunity for utilities to invest productive capital into the distribution system.

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