Could electricity be the currency of parking buildings in the future?

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Although the mammoth parking buildings and garages in urban centers are generally seen as eyesores and architectural afterthoughts, ponder this: What if they helped stabilize the power for the community around it? That’s a future that Nissan appears to be pointing to with what it claims is a global first. In its Nissan Pavilion exhibition space in Yokohama, Japan, the company is allowing electric vehicle drivers to discharge power from their EVs to pay for parking. In an accompanying video demonstrating the idea, Nissan shows a Leaf connected to the company’s Nissan Energy Share unit, which is capable of using the Leaf’s built-in bi-directional charging capability—via its CHAdeMO charge port. The steady power output can serve as an energy backup for blackouts or emergencies or function as a backstop to help stabilize the grid at peak demand times—helping maximizing the benefits of renewable sources. Nissan Energy Share with Nissan Leaf The Pavilion, which opens to the public this weekend, is powered by hydroelectric power, with additional solar panels. Although the company didn’t say exactly how the power from plugged-in parked vehicles would be used, there’s an off-grid cafe within the facility. Electric vehicles offer a significant and largely untapped […]

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