No license for EV charging stations: How this could change the way we look at Electric Vehicles

Over the next decade, the government needs to set up a sustainable infrastructure for Electric Vehicles, this involves encouraging businesses through education on the laws that govern the distribution of electricity.

By: | Updated: April 17, 2018 10:46 AM

In a positive turn for electric cars and sustainable mobility the government has announced that vehicles will not need a separate licence under the Electricity Act of 2003, the government has said, that this would give a big boost to their plans to implement Electric infrastructure over the next decade. This comes after a confusion as to whether charging a battery could be called an act of transmission, distribution or trading of electricity, which would require a license under the Act. “The charging of battery essentially involves utilization of electrical energy for its conversion to chemical energy, which gets stored in the battery. Thus, charging of the battery of an electric vehicle by a charging station involves a service requiring consumption of electricity by the charging station and earning revenue for this purpose from the owner of the vehicle,” the power ministry said in a recent statement to ET.

Now, this is a welcome initiative from the government with industry players lauding the move which benefits the free market growth in Electric mobility division. “In absence of such clarification, stakeholders were not sure of which business model to adopt for providing charging infra for consumers. Now, PSUs, private players, discoms, original equipment manufacturers, etc can join hands in developing a robust and appropriate charging infra for wider adoption of EVs in India,” said Awadhesh Kumar Jha, vice president vice president-Charge & Drive and Sustainability in a statement on ET.

However, the law draws a line at the sale of electricity to individuals or businesses as electricity is consumed within premises owned by the charging station, which may be connected to the distribution system or otherwise for receiving electricity, the ministry added. In this case, the law would be breached.

Electric Vehicles are still a few years away, but if we have to plan to be sustainable, then we need to plan ahead to create an ecosystem that can comprehensively support them as well. This move to clarify this law is clearly a symbol of the government encouraging the free market to establish themselves and help kick-start the Eco sphere that will see us becoming a more sustainable country

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