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SMUD and TEPCO partnership accelerates transportation electrification, decarbonization

| November 14, 2022

With a focus on zero carbon innovation, SMUD is working diligently to get more clean vehicles on the road and improve air quality

The Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) and the Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, incorporated (TEPCO), Japan’s largest electric utility, announced an agreement to collaborate on vehicle-grid integration technologies with the purpose of accelerating transportation electrification and decarbonization.

“As SMUD pushes forward to become the first large utility in the nation to achieve power supply decarbonization, we enthusiastically welcome key partnerships such as this one with TEPCO, an innovative global energy and technology company,” said Paul Lau, CEO and general manager of SMUD. “Every SMUD partnership, whether at the community or global level, is essential to our 2030 Zero Carbon Plan. With a focus on zero carbon innovation, SMUD is working diligently to get more clean vehicles on the road, improve air quality, create high-paying jobs and usher in a clean energy future that benefits everyone.”

“Efficient use of renewable energy and electrification in the transportation sector are two pillars of our shared decarbonization goals,” said Tomomichi Seki, Managing Executive Officer of TEPCO. “As a pioneering utility for EV charging technologies in Japan, TEPCO has long been dedicated to establishing EV infrastructure such as development of a fast charger standard (CHAdeMO). TEPCO believes SMUD, with its ambitious zero carbon target by 2030 and innovative experience in leading green energy-efficiency and distributed energy resources activities, such as solar plus storage, is the ideal partner for significant real-world vehicle-to-everything collaboration. This critical first-hand operational experience with SMUD is the key to cope with challenges that lie ahead of us in Japanese operational conditions in the near future, and thus it will help us solve grid challenges, promote the electrification of energy demand and shape futuristic utility values that accelerate grid-EV integration in the U.S., Japan and beyond.”

The Memorandum of Understanding between SMUD and TEPCO, signed November 1, establishes a framework for shared research and collaboration on how to expand and support EV adoption and vehicle-to-everything technology while maintaining a resilient and reliable power grid. The collaboration also aims to enhance solar consumption initiatives, reduce on-peak load, prevent strain on distribution infrastructure, increase customer bill savings and share the grid value of these services with customers.

With consideration of grid planning, operations, interconnection and utility and customer financial impacts, SMUD and TEPCO will study, develop and pilot complementary programs that further account for, and promote, vehicle-grid integration technologies. Automated EV load management, managed EV charging, bidirectional EV charging and other advanced grid services also grant customers access to backup power resources for their homes or businesses and Virtual Power Plant technology for battery aggregation in a manner that bolsters grid stability and systemwide decarbonization.

SMUD considers vehicle-grid integration among its tools for efficient asset planning and grid operations. TEPCO supports this collaboration through its expertise and know-how that it established through series of vehicle-to-everything demonstration projects. The years-long collaboration exhibits a desire for leadership in vehicle-grid integration to balance between grid decarbonization and economic efficiency.

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