PUCO Power Forward Phase Three to Include Significant Focus on Utility Electric Vehicle Programs


The Ohio Public Utilities Commission (PUCO) will hold a seminar on electric vehicles (EVs), policies, and issues related to utility programs to support Electric vehicles and charging stations. The seminar will be part of phase three of the Commission’s PowerForward proceeding. Phases one and two took place during the summer and fall of 2017. The specific date for the primary focus on EVs hasn’t been set but is likely to be March 6, 7, or 8, based on a communication from the Commission.

In this same communication, the PUCO issued a speaker solicitation. Proposals will be accepted by the PUCO through Friday, Jan. 12, 2018, at PowerForward@puco.ohio.gov. “Topics and Inquiries” of interested are specified as part of the communication.

“This is a great step forward by the PUCO,” said Sam Spofforth, Executive Director of Clean Fuels Ohio, which has encouraged the Commission to hold the EV seminar as part of Power Forward. “This session should help the Commission provide utilities and other stakeholders with guidance needed to shape utility EV programs, which are critical to overcoming market barriers to EVs, ensure that all utility customers benefit financially from increase loads, and help EVs play a constructive and growing role in a modern, efficient, responsive grid.

Clean Fuels Ohio (CFO) has held several meetings with Commissioners and staff over the past 18 months regarding the benefits of utility EV programs and policies to overcome market barriers. CFO has engaged independently and as part of the Charge Up Midwest Regional collaboration.

In July 2017, CFO submitted a proposal on behalf of Charge Up Midwest for the Commission to conduct a day-long seminar as part of PowerForward phase three to focus on design of utility EV programs, policies, and related issues. The goal will be to increase understanding among commissioners and staff and provide information to help the Commission set a framework for utility EV programs while identifying policies needed to support EV adoption in ways that provide financial benefits to all utility customers and help modernize the electric grid in a variety of ways.

In November, the PUCO agreed to conduct the session, and asked CFO and Charge Up Midwest partners to provide detailed questions to help frame agenda topics and speakers who could provide expertise. CFO submitted these questions and speaker suggestions in early December. More details on the session date, detailed agenda and speakers will be available in January and February.

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