Transportation Electrification: Evaluating Pathways for Sustainable Electric Vehicle Adoption in Texas




Murillo, Sara

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Electric vehicle (EV) deployment provides an opportunity to reduce emissions in Texas, which has the greatest transportation emissions in the United States. This study aims to evaluate the impact of light-duty EV (LDEV) adoption through Switch-ERCOT, a generation capacity expansion model of the Texas power grid (ERCOT). Particularly, this work investigates how various LDEV adoption rates and charging strategies (managed and unmanaged) affect the electricity generation capacity mix, hourly dispatch, transmission capacity, carbon emissions, and utility costs in ERCOT.

Results suggest that 50% to 100% LDEV adoption by 2050 increases electricity generation and storage capacity, in turn increasing costs by 2.4% or 6.5%, depending on the adoption scenario. Managed charging allows for allows for 12.4% to 29.5% more solar generation and between 29.5% to 41.7% less storage usage from 2020 - 2050. This lowers overall power generation expenditures by less than one percent compared to unmanaged charging. Both charging strategies have comparable impacts on transportation emissions. . In the scenario where half of LDVs were electric by 2050, tailpipe emissions were reduced by 27% to 29% from 2020 to 2050, depending on the charging strategy, and in the complete electrification scenario, tailpipe emissions were reduced by 63% from 2020 to 2050. These results indicate that policies incentivizing EV adoption, even without a carbon cap, can facilitate sustainable decarbonization in the transportation sector and minimally increase utility costs.


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