Great, international story from our main site: Here's a link to watch the video: http://www.renewablenow.biz/energizing-transit.html
By turning itself into one huge Living Lab for Smart Charging of electric vehicles, the Netherlands is fast becoming the international front runner for smart charging EV's, using them to store peak power production of solar and wind. Already 325 municipalities (including Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht and The Hague) have joined the Dutch Living Lab Smart Charging representing 80 percent of all public charging stations. It's also supported by the Dutch government.
Adding to this some large players on private and semi-private charging stations such as The New Motion and EV-Box have joined. Very soon all Dutch charging stations will be open for tests and research projects.
The Living Lab Smart Charging is an open platform where companies (from multinationals to small tech start-ups, both national and international), universities, local and regional governments and grid operators cooperate. They operate an ambitious three step program.
Step 1. Make as many charging stations ready for Smart Charging. A huge upgrade operation is now taking place across the country making sure the existing charging stations will be able to technically facilitate Smart Charging. All new stations already are Smart Charging Ready, such as the 2.500 new charging points being rolled out by the Southern provinces of Noord-Brabant and Limburg.
Step 2. Use those innovative stations for research and testing of Smart Charging. Eg. there's an App (by Jedlix) that allows it's users to earn money by using technology to charge the car in the middle of the night when the wind is still producing power but there is little demand for it. In Utrecht 'vehicle to grid' is being tested together with Renault: charging the electric car with solar panels and using it as storage to put power back into the grid when the sun is no longer shining.
Step 3. Putting all innovation, tests and research findings into international standards so everyone can benefit from the Dutch experience with Smart Charging.
The ultimate goal of the Dutch Living Lab Smart Charging: all electric cars driving on the power of the sun and the wind. The idea of the Living Lab Smart Charging is explained in this premiering short animation.
ASHTON HAYES, England — This small village of about 1,000 people looks like any other nestled in the countryside.
But Ashton Hayes is different in an important way when it comes to one of the world’s most pressing issues: climate change. Hundreds of residents have banded together to cut greenhouse emissions — they use clotheslines instead of dryers, take fewer flights, install solar panels and glaze windows to better insulate their homes.
The effort, reaching its 10th anniversary this year, has led to a 24 percent cut in emissions, according to surveys by a professor of environmental sustainability who lives here.
But what makes Ashton Hayes unusual is its approach — the residents have done it themselves, without prodding from government. About 200 towns, cities and counties around the world — including Notteroy, Norway; Upper Saddle River, N.J.; and Changhua County, Taiwan — have reached out to learn how the villagers here did it.
As climate science has become more accepted, and the effects of a warming planet are becoming increasingly clear, Ashton Hayes is a case study for the next phase of battling climate change: getting people to change their habits.
“We just think everyone should try to clean up their patch,” said Rosemary Dossett, a resident of the village. “And rather than going out and shouting about it, we just do it.”
One of their secrets, it seems, is that the people of Ashton Hayes feel in charge, rather than following government policies. When the member of Parliament who represents the village showed up at their first public meeting in January 2006, he was told he could not make any speeches.