“Low Energy: Estimating Electric Vehicle Electricity Use”
Fiona Burlig (University of Chicago), James Bushnell (University of California, Davis), David Rapson (University of California, Davis), and Catherine Wolfram (University of California, Berkeley)
We provide the first at-scale estimate of electric vehicle (EV) home charging. Previous estimates are based on conflicting surveys or are extrapolated from a small, unrepresentative sample of households with dedicated EV meters. We combine billions of hourly electricity meter measurements with address-level EV registration records from California households, including 64,000 EV owners. The average EV increases overall household load by 2.9 kilowatt-hours per day, well under half the amount assumed by state regulators. Results imply that EVs travel less than expected on electric power, raising questions about transportation electrification for climate policy.