November 29, 2019
In case of disasters, electrified vehicles (xEVs), such as electric vehicles (EVs) and fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs), can work as emergency power sources taking advantage of in-vehicle storage batteries or electricity generators. In light of this advantage, the Council for Electrified Vehicle Society (CEVS) prepared a draft report titled “Draft Action Plan for Promoting Utilization of Electrified Vehicles (xEVs) in Disaster Situations,” aiming to encourage the public to make use of xEVs in case of disasters. In response to this, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) will embark on specific actions under the plan without delay.
In light of Japan’s experiences of blackouts caused by the recent Typhoon No. 15 and other disasters, METI considers it important to improve the resilience of power supply in case of disasters by taking advantage of dispersed power sources including storage batteries built in EVs, FCEVs and other xEVs.As seen in the past, xEV batteries at safe shelters, welfare facilities for the elderly and other facilities during the blackouts caused by the earthquake in Hokkaido Prefecture in 2018 and the typhoon in Chiba Prefecture in 2019, have been playing a significant role in more and more disaster situations, and social expectations for the batteries are growing.
Meanwhile, METI recognizes that some challenges are seen in the utilization of xEV batteries in disaster situations: people are less aware of the level to which such batteries can meet their demand, municipalities or organizations may face difficulties in finding places where affected people need power supply, and many simply don’t know that such batteries can become power sources in emergency situations.
Note: Electrified vehicles (xEVs) include: battery electric vehicles (BEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) and fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs).
2. Outline of the Draft Action Plan
Against this backdrop, in July 2019, METI inaugurated a Council for Electrified Vehicle Society (CEVS), aiming to raise public awareness and promote dissemination of xEVs. The number of CEVS members is 127 organizations as of November 29, 2019, including automobile manufacturers, energy-related companies and user companies of xEVs.
Under the CEVS framework, on November 27, 2019, a Working Group on Promoting Utilization of Electrified Vehicles held its first meeting, held discussions on approaches to making use of xEVs in disaster situations and compiled the discussion results into a Draft Action Plan for Promoting Utilization of Electrified Vehicles (xEVs) in Disaster Situations.
In response to this, METI will prepare a manual on how to use xEV batteries for power supply as an easy-to-understand compilation and will embark on actions under the plan, including raising public awareness and dissemination of approaches to xEV batteries for power supply among municipalities, welfare facilities for the elderly and other facilities.
Moreover, in light of the specific public demand for xEVs and challenges therein, METI will hold discussions on FY2020 and the following years’ policies for certain efforts and institutional challenges by the end of FY2019.
3. Links to related information (URL)
- Council for Electrified Vehicle Society (CEVS) (in Japanese)
- Press release of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (on November 15, 2019)
“Electricity Outlets for xEVs and Other Electric Vehicles are Available as Power Sources in Disaster and other Emergency Situations” (in Japanese)
Division in Charge
Automobile Division, Manufacturing Industries Bureau