One of the main mantras espoused by critics of the electric car is what will happen to the millions of batteries that will no longer be used in electric vehicles due to their wear and tear, and the environmental problem that this will pose. But the answer is simple. Reuse first and recycle later. And it is that a battery, once its useful life in a vehicle ends, continues to maintain a part of its storage capacity that can be used to regulate the electrical network and take more advantage of renewable energy sources.
The last example comes to us from China, where General Motors has partnered with the local manufacturer SAIC to start up a battery station from electric cars, to take advantage of the growing number of packs that are reaching the second-hand market at the end of the vehicles useful life for reasons such as wear or accident. Also of the prototypes manufactured for the development of new models and which cannot circulate legally once its conceptual phase has ended.
This is the case of this initiative in the Guangxi province; it will use the batteries of the economical Baojun E100. A low-cost urban electric car developed between General Motors and SAIC, which has a small 19.2 kWh battery and in China has a cost before aid that starts at 7,000 dollars.
In total, they have set up a facility with a capacity of 1,000 kWh and 250 kW of power. Enough to supply the needs of 100 average homes for a full day, or to support a large number of residents if there is a problem in the electrical network.
It will also serve to store surplus renewable energy, reduce the cost of electricity bills for residents of the area, and reduce the load at peak times of the electricity grid.
A circular economy that allows reducing emissions both in the life of the vehicle, as well as during the production and recycling of its batteries. All thanks to the more significant role of renewable energies that will see their intermittencies attenuated thanks to the expansion of these types of initiatives that will gain speed as the number of batteries reaching the market increases. In turn, this will allow the number of backup stations to increase again.