Building efficiency and energy consumption could be offset by smart building technology and backup power from electric vehicles.
For the most part, when we think of an electric vehicle, we only notice that it takes energy from the power grid and allows us to travel from place to place. On the other hand, when properly equipped with vehicle-to-building or -grid [V2B or V2G] technology, electric vehicles are handy backup power supplies that can feed energy back to the power grid.
Toyota Prius is one such vehicle to offer this technology right from the factory. There are even aftermarket companies that make conversion kits to add this functionality to your electric vehicle.
During a power outage, such as after recent superstorm Hurricane Sandy, electric vehicles with V2G technology can be used to provide emergency power. When combined with smart building systems, electric vehicles with V2B technology can even be used to manage building energy consumption.
According to Navigant Research, nearly 200,000 electric vehicles with this technology will be sold by 2020. As more offices and buildings install smart building systems and electric vehicle charging stations, or during emergency situations, the mobile fleet of rechargeable battery packs will come in handy.