Mobility Portal, Spain
Date: September 22, 2023
Inés Platini
By Inés Platini
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Ormazabal calls for “strengthening and modernizing the electrical network” for the eMobility wave

During the second panel of the Oviedo Sustainable Mobility Exhibition (MOVEO), Guillermo Amann, Senior Advisor to the President at Ormazabal, explains the main challenges facing the Spanish electricity grid. What could be the solutions?
Guillermo Amann, Senior Advisor to the President at Ormazabal.
Guillermo Amann, Senior Advisor to the President at Ormazabal.

In the midst of the eMobility transition, Guillermo Amann, Senior Advisor to the President at Ormazabal-Velatia, emphasizes the importance of digitizing and upgrading the Spanish electrical grid.

He points out that while the current grid is effective for current consumption levels, it needs to adapt to the new demands that will arise in the country, which are becoming increasingly sophisticated.

To achieve this, two aspects need to be considered: digitization and grid reinforcement.

Another challenge posed by electric vehicle charging is managing when vehicle charging will take place. According to Amann, many users will charge their cars in the morning.

This could result in an excess demand for energy during one of the “peak consumption hours,” which is typically around 9 a.m.

It is essential to strengthen and modernize the electrical grid, not only in conventional power terms but also from a smart perspective, to achieve more efficient load management“, emphasizes the Ormazabal executive.

Headquarters of the new Ormazabal factory.

In addition to this, the expert highlights the importance of granting the necessary permits to enable charging points and implementing motivating projects “rather than simple pilot programs.”

According to a report by the Business Association for the Development and Promotion of Electric Mobility (AEDIVE), about 6,800 charging points are currently inactive.

This represents an 8% decrease compared to the 7,400 pending points at the end of 2022.

Currently, the number of operational charging points is 25,106, showing a 16.4% increase compared to the previous year’s data (a total of 21,573).

In this context, there has been a growth rate in public charging points in the first six months of 2023.

However, this growth rate “will need to accelerate to meet Spain’s objectives in the field of electric mobility,” according to the organization.

“In this chicken-and-egg dilemma, the priority is to develop the charging infrastructure”, says Guillermo Amann of Ormazabal.

He further explains: “It is essential to make a considerable effort through incentives to establish a charging network that eliminates the anxiety factor associated with range anxiety.”

At this point, Ormazabal’s Senior Advisor emphasizes that this work is already being carried out by private companies.

“We are seeing more and more charging operators joining our ecosystem, and many foreign companies are starting their deployments in the national territory,” he insists.

Ormazabal on the current Spanish electrical network

Furthermore, he asserts that the Spanish electrical grid for transportation is “exceptional, one of the top three in the world, on par with the leading edge in Europe.”

This discussion arises around the 67 million euros that Spain has secured to boost the expansion of the charging network.

This occurred within the framework of the 4th cut of the Connect Europe Mechanism (CEF) call, dedicated to the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Facility (AFIF).

Specifically, seven business projects with Spanish and other European Union state participation have been selected. These projects also have the support of the Ministry of Transport, Mobility, and Urban Agenda (MITMA).

Part of this funding will be allocated to the installation of 365 stations with 2,601 electric vehicle charging points along the Spanish Trans-European Transport Network (RTE-T).

These stations will primarily be located in interurban sections.

Moreover, the charging points will be super-fast (≥125 kW) or ultra-fast (≥250 kW), allowing the batteries of both light and heavy electric vehicles to be charged in between five and 20 minutes, depending on the charging point’s power capacity.

Read more: Stellantis to invest over €1 billion in Spain for future EV production

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