Alabama Power, a subsidiary of Atlanta-based Southern Company that provides reliable, affordable electricity to 1.5 million customers across the state, recently announced two new financial incentives for residential customers who own or are considering purchasing an electric vehicle (EV) and for making sure they handle EV charging at home.
Customers can receive a one-time $500 rebate for the purchase and installation of a Level 2 (240V) charger at their home. EV home charging provides an affordable and convenient way to charge, and adding a Level 2 charger allows owners to charge up to 10 times faster than a Level 1 (120V) charger.
Secondly, customers can save on their electric bill by charging their electric vehicle at home at a discounted rate during the off-peak hours of 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.
To qualify, customers must own or lease a plug-in electric vehicle manufactured primarily for use on public streets, roads and highways. Electric scooters, electric bicycles, golf carts and motorized electric wheelchairs are not eligible.
“These incentives are one way we are helping customers to innovate their lifestyle and achieve long-term energy savings,” said Tony Smoke, senior vice president of Marketing and Economic Development. “As technology advances and the needs of our customers evolve, we are focused on providing new ways to assist them.”
There are also federal credits and deductions administered by the Internal Revenue Service. For information on federal incentives, visit Credits for New Clean Vehicles Purchased in 2023 or After | Internal Revenue Service.
Electric vehicles can be charged using three charging speeds, as summarized by the US Department of Energy.
The slowest, Level 1 equipment, provides charging through a common residential 120-volt (120V) AC outlet. Level 1 chargers can take 40-50 hours to charge a battery electric vehicle (BEV) from empty and 5-6 hours to charge a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) from empty.
Level 2 equipment offers charging through 240V (in residential applications) or 208V (in commercial applications) electrical service, and is common for home, workplace, and public charging. Level 2 chargers can charge a BEV from empty in 4-10 hours and a PHEV from empty in 1-2 hours.
Direct Current Fast Charging (DCFC)
The fastest speed, direct current fast charging (DCFC) equipment, enables rapid charging along heavy-traffic corridors at installed stations. DCFC equipment can charge a BEV to 80 percent in just 20 minutes to 1 hour. Most PHEVs currently on the market do not work with fast chargers.
Alabama Power is part of Southern Company, which has set a greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction goal of net zero emissions by 2050.
In 2020, the Southern Company system reduced GHG emissions 52 percent from its 2007 benchmark levels, exceeding its intermediate 2030 goal to reduce GHG emissions by 50 percent. The parent and its subsidiaries have a long history fostering partnerships with government agencies, businesses, and research institutes as part of their plan to continually implement progressive energy solutions.
“At Alabama Power, we want to help innovate our state while boosting energy efficiency,” Smoke said. “It is our hope that the incentives we’re offering help our customers take the next step in adopting a new technology.”
According to Statista, the Electric Vehicles market is expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2023-2027) of 22.79 percent, resulting in a projected market volume of US$139.10bn by 2027. Electric Vehicles market unit sales are expected to reach 2.13m vehicles in 2027.
The growth of the Electric Vehicles (EV) market has been significant despite the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting supply chain bottlenecks. Compared to 2020, sales of new electric vehicles more than doubled in 2021 with an increase of 51.8 percent. This brought EV sales to about 5 percent of global passenger car sales in 2021.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 80 percent of EV charging happens at home, so figuring out how all these cars will affect their owners’ electric bills — and the utility grids they’re connected to — is becoming an increasingly pressing matter, which leading companies like Alabama Power are seeking to address with incentive programs.