Environmental News from India:
- The Madhya Pradesh government has warned strict action against commercial electric vehicles found using unauthorised domestic or agricultural connections for charging.
- Lack of awareness and dearth of charging stations are among the reasons that such unauthorised practices take place, say EV experts.
- Domestic meter connections prove cost effective for two wheeler EV segments while for the e-rickshaws and higher segments separate EV connections with government rates are more economical.
Amid reports of domestic, agricultural and illegal power connections being misused for recharging commercial electric vehicles such as e-rickshaws and electric two-wheelers, the Madhya Pradesh (MP) government announced last month, that commercial EV owners will be required to have a separate electricity connection to charge their electric vehicles and strict action will be taken against anyone using unauthorised metered connections.
This move comes as the central Indian state has been trying to streamline its electric mobility sector and is even expected to update its electric vehicle (EV) policy soon.
According to the state energy department, EV users need to install a separate electricity meter to charge their vehicles and pay the tariff as notified by the Madhya Pradesh Electricity Regulation Commission (MPERC). Domestic and agricultural meters are subsidised in the state. As per the latest notified MPERC tariff, domestic electricity tariff ranges from Rs. 3.34 per unit (up to 30 units a month) to Rs. 6.74 unit (more than 300 units a month). The tariff for commercial EV charging stations and battery swapping stations has been fixed at Rs. 6 per unit.
The commercial EV charging tarrif (Rs. 6 per unit) could in fact turn out cheaper for e-rickshaws, which use 48V batteries and around seven units per day. Using a domestic connection would be costlier by around Rs. 0.55 per unit as it would cost up to Rs. 6.55 (for 150-300 unit monthly consumption). Domestic connections do turn out to be cheaper for electric two-wheeler which usually accommodate 12V batteries and uses between 1-3 units of electricity per day.
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