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Driverless cars will lead to data-sharing – of the electrical kind

First create the infrastructure for taxes

Even better would be to require EV's themselves to record charging and discharging data and report when plugged into approved charging stations, either at home or away from home so they can qualify for tax credits.

Charging stations will have to be approved by the government, non-approved stations and methods will have to be outlawed for safety reasons.

Once that system in place, stop offering credits, start with low level taxation and then crank it up until the taxpayers are squealing. Back it down a little to show everyone the government is all about tax cuts and then increase at every opportunity.

Then again maybe this is just the first stage of that process.

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Big Brother

Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

You missed out the most important part of that system, being able to track when and where cars are charging so that big brother can track us and tell us if we're driving too much.

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Terminator

Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

"Attention human occupant. This vehicle has used it's permitted electricity for the week. Please exit the vehicle and walk to your destination."

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

"Even better would be to require EV's themselves to record charging and discharging data and report when plugged into approved charging stations, either at home or away from home so they can qualify for tax credits."

You have this back to front. Government will want to know how much electricity is being used so that they can tax the energy to make up for the loss of fossil fuel revenue. There won't be tax credits, but there will be a taxable charge, either on the cost of the electricity used for the vehicle or an annual tax bill added onto the VED etc?

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

"Then again maybe this is just the first stage of that process."

That was my immediate reaction to the article. Once they've been suckered in with the low prices start adding tax to the power consumed for charging so that as tax on petrol and diesel goes down the tax on charging goes up.

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Pint

Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

@Haefen,

I must have had a minor black out - I totally missed the second part of your post! Apologies for contradicting you when we were actually saying the same thing!

compensation? --->

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

as tax on petrol and diesel goes down the tax on charging goes up

Fuel duty alone brings in around £28bn at present, almost 4% of the government's income, and there's VAT on top of that. Of course that income will have to be replaced (or public services cut) if there is a significant drop in the consumption of conventional fuels.

Petrol duty is potentially quite an effective form of taxation since it is roughly correlated with mileage and road damage and there's nothing much else petrol is routinely used for. Trying to tax "transport electricity" differently to other forms of electricity sounds like taking the "red diesel" problem and scaling it up by many orders of magnitude, so I suspect distance-based taxation is going to be the preferred option.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

WOT! Pay tax on leccy that I use to charge my car that I have generated myself?

Pleae explain how that will work?

Answer, it won't unless I ray myself the tax I pay when using my leccy.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

Pay tax on leccy that I use to charge my car that I have generated myself?

If you plan to drive your car on public roads, yes. Probably they can do it a better way though, by charging a per mile tax. That wouldn't have been practical back when fuel taxes originated, but any electric car is modern enough to have GPS so you only pay UK tax for mileage driven in the UK, and not for miles driven in Europe (though they'll probably want a way to collect for miles you drive there) Someone would need to create a standard for electric cars to adhere to, that would reliably record/report the miles. Purely agricultural vehicles like tractors would be exempt, rather than having to worry about "red diesel" type stuff.

No one likes taxes, but being taxed per mile for using the roads is the fairest way to pay for them - the more you use them, the more you pay.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

No one likes taxes, but being taxed per mile for using the roads is the fairest way to pay for them - the more you use them, the more you pay.

Bwahahahhaaa! In your definition of "fairer", you've ignored that when EVs are commonplace, they will be subject to road pricing, so that it won't be just the distance you drive, it will be the location, the road type, the time (and potentially a dynamic variable for levels of congestion on the day). This is ALREADY the thinking of UK transport bureaucrats.

You might even agree with it. Until you come a cropper from bizarre "cliff edge" effects, suffer the unintended consequences, and consider the sheer fucking outrage of being charged a small fortune for roads you've ALREADY paid to have built.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

Which is what happens in France, where there is no road tax, so a level of expensive bureaucracy is removed. Also a good train service, for example Poitiers to Paris 55 euro's return, off peak in advance ticket, Manchester to London 88 GBP via beardy rail. Privatisation of essential industries sucks.

Yes there are toll roads, but if you are not in a hurry there is normally a cheaper route.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

WOT! Pay tax on leccy that I use to charge my car that I have generated myself?

Pleae explain how that will work?

The same way it works if you put biodiesel you have mixed up yourself. If the plod smells the distinct smell of Fish-n-Chips or Chinese coming from your car you will be stopped and required to produce documents demonstrating that you have paid the excise on it. If you do not, things get very ugly.

If you think the idea is far fetched there was a point in the 2000-es when Welch police was regularly doing stop-n-search on older diesel vehicles (ones that can be easily adapted for biodiesel). I am not aware of other police forces doing it, but I would not be surprised if some did it as well.

That was around a point in time when 3 things coincided: It was before Euro4 forced the introduction of injectors that are too easily clogged up to run anything above 10-15% vegetable oil, Vegetable oil bulk rate (not even recycled) price at that point was lower than the price of diesel which went through the roof as the price of crude chased the 100 mark. So people simply bought sunflower oil bulk and ran on mixes > 50%.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

"Probably they can do it a better way though, by charging a per mile tax."

Unless they make it 10000 times higher for a 10 ton vehicle than a 1 ton one, it won't be equitable.

Mind you the taxation paid by heavy vehicles is far from equitable at the moment - and vastly in favour of the heavy vehicles.

The actual ratio of damage caused by heavier vehicles is massively higher than that done by cars (it's proportional to the 5th power of axle weight and the square of velocity) with a substantial portion of urban road damage caused by busses. The rise of self driving vehicles would be a good opportunity to move to a lot more smaller vehicles (6-8 seats) that can simply park themselves in offpeak periods (they'd replace both busses and taxis)

A bus is a highly efficient way of moving a lot of people at once. A bus _service_ is a spectacularly inefficient waste of resources.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

"The same way it works if you put biodiesel you have mixed up yourself. "

There's a specific excise exemption on biofuel production of 2000 litres per location per year. Presumably that can also be argued for home charging too.

The point that excise will come on EVs is a good one. The government is not easily going to give up a source of around £75billion/year (combined total of duty and tax load on annual fuel sales)

We may even see road user charge scaling which reflects the actual damages inflicted on the roads by heavier vehicles

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

We may even see road user charge scaling which reflects the actual damages inflicted on the roads by heavier vehicles

I sadly doubt that. Do the maths, and you'll see there's no way any government would put those taxes on their buses, or even HGVs. The whole point of road taxes is to squeeze car drivers.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

All you need to do is require a separate meter for a car charging socket, and apply a higher rate of tax to it.

You probably could charge your car from a domestic 13A plug, but at the equivalent of 1 litre of petrol every three hours, it's not something most people are going to do.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

It's been done long since in New Zealand: all diesel vehicles used on the public highway have to display a Road User Charges sticker, paid for in advance (basically so farmers wouldn't pay fuel tax for their diesel tractors). Trucks pay more than light vehicles. Electric vehicles should also have to pay, but are exempt until 2020 to encourage their uptake (they have the advantage here that they basically run on a mix of wind, water and geothermal energy - very "green").

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

No, the EV's don't run on a renewables mix in New Zealand. This is a common fallacy. 70% of NZ's energy comes from renewables, the balance comes from Oil, Gas and Coal. The problem is that 99% of the time the renewables are served up first, so dino fuel is used for incremental load. So every extra load connected to the grid, over and above "normal" load, comes from dino fuel. Pretty much all the electricity for EV's is generated from imported coal or oil.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

Once that system in place, stop offering credits, start with low level taxation and then crank it up until the taxpayers are squealing. Back it down a little to show everyone the government is all about tax cuts and then increase at every opportunity.

I think you've nailed it.

The hole in their plan is my plan to have a generator power the cars recharging, and power the generator with home brew biodiesel. It might put a little dent in their zero emissions from transport plan, but it'll save a fortune in taxes over the life of the vehicle.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

I suspect distance-based taxation is going to be the preferred option.

Time and distance.

They'll charge you more to use the same road at rush hour in order to try to spread traffic around. Which won't work, because the time at which you're driving to work isn't usually discretionary, it's imposed by your employer.

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Re: First create the infrastructure for taxes

No one likes taxes, but being taxed per mile for using the roads is the fairest way to pay for them - the more you use them, the more you pay.

Change the word roads for the word NHS and see if you feel the same.

On one level I agree with you that charging for road use is the fairest system, however, I don't feel as warm and fuzzy if I do as I suggested and swap in the term NHS. Essentially, I think the idea is too simplistic, but I haven't worked fully out why yet.....

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Reading the Meter

Isn't this just forcing remote reporting so that meter readers don't have to be employed to read the meter on each charging point for when National Grid charges the charging point supplier?

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Re: Reading the Meter

Nope, not at all. Smart meters are already intended to do that.

The reason for this is that the local distribution network is barely able to support the additional demand of EVs. In rough terms, a single EV will consumer as much power as the average house does over a year. Because many houses have more than one car, any number of EVs in one street will (as grid architecture is at the mo') destabilise or even break the grid. Bunglement didn't think EVs through when picking a winner (as usual), and this is about trying to pick up the pieces.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Reading the Meter

"any number of EVs in one street will (as grid architecture is at the mo') destabilise or even break the grid"

Citations welcome, preferably with better quantitative evidence than "any number ... break the grid". I know that kind of info doesn't fit in a Twit or even a comment here at El Reg, so here's one someone else in the industry prepared earlier... others may well be available:

"The My Electric Avenue Project was delivered between January 2013 and December 2015 by EA Technology on behalf of Scottish and Southern Energy Networks (SSEN)" and investigated "How local electricity networks can cope with charging clusters of electric vehicles - My Electric Avenue’s final results reveal all…

• Across Britain 32% of local electricity networks (312,000 circuits) will require intervention when 40% - 70% of customers have EVs

(continues)"

Buried in the facts and figures it'll also be revealed that lack of investment in distribution networks, e.g. to cope with increasing housing density and to cope with increasing contribution from PV, and [...], is also a problem, but by blaming EVs the distribution companies think they might get yet more 'free' money from the rest of us.

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Re: Reading the Meter

"any number of EVs in one street will (as grid architecture is at the mo') destabilise or even break the grid" Citations welcome, preferably with better quantitative evidence than "any number ... break the grid". I know that kind of info doesn't fit in a Twit or even a comment here at El Reg, so here's one someone else in the industry prepared earlier... others may well be available:

Sorry, AC, I'm not messing around with citations. I've worked for one of Europe's largest electricity supplier and distributors, I've participated in conferences at the Royal Society and across my entire industry I'm sure you've got experience in areas I haven't, but I'm not calling you to prove those.

What is more, there are few (if any) formal citations BECAUSE THE BLOODY WORK HASN'T BEEN DONE. That's right. Bunglement have all but committed us to an EV future, without doing ANY ADEQUATE systems analysis and modelling. I've sat in meetings with industry and government representatives discussing this very point, everybody accepts that systems modelling would be a great idea. But nobody will do it. Not just the EVs, all the renewable power stuff, electrification of rail, of heating, growing demands for data centre and home IT and entertainment use.

If nobody will fund the work, it won't be done. Then there will be no citations. Now, because there are no citations, does that mean that the idea I'm putting forward is shite? Perhaps. But Occam's razor would suggest that the lack of citations is due to the lack of research funding.

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Holmes

First they came for the meter readings...

AEV Bill A new amendment to the UK's Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill aims to make it mandatory for electric car charging point operators to transmit power consumption data to Britain's National Grid.

Hate to say I told you so but, as the harbinger of bad news, I'm doing my job correctly. Now they have a data slurping tentacle in there. Next up, mandatory odometer readings, GPS tracks and timestamps for road pricing. From there it's a free-for-all on in car entertainment listening habits, Bluetooth connectivity, occupancy (so that you can be charged a higher rate at peak times for not sharing your car with that one smelly co-worker who never washes), places visited and shopping habits extrapolated from that. The charging point operators will become µGoogles, selling your metadata to the highest bidder. Oh, and let's not forget insurance companies examining your telemetry data with a squad of becardiganned¹ adenoidal navel-gazers critiquing your driving style.

Icon. It was utterly bloody inevitable.

¹Yes, it is a word. I just made it up, the same as marketing are wont to do.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: First they came for the meter readings...

To those who decry things as the thin end of the wedge, I would suggest they preemptively call for a dowel instead. Then they can own the ground and instead say calmly: "*This*, but no more.

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Local Councils and CP's

What a great idea. Waverly (yes you lot of useless twats) won't do it despite Farnham Town Council wanting to put them in (An Ex Mayor drives a Zoe and wants to promote Green Driving)

Then there are the CP's at Hospitals 'reserved for staff', which in reality means just the Chief Exec in his Tesla Model X. Bah Humbug.

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Alert

Why they're pushing Smart Meters...

Am I the only one to notice the relentless push to force people to take up smart meters? There will be massive surcharges (aka taxes) overnight and when you use more than a few kW because the juice is obviously going in to your electric car.

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Re: Why they're pushing Smart Meters...

You could buy an old IBM mainframe to keep in your basement, and tell the power company that's what is drawing all the electricity. Tell them you only run it at night because it hits up your house too much during the day :)

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Re: Why they're pushing Smart Meters...

"There will be massive surcharges (aka taxes) overnight and when you use more than a few kW because the juice is obviously going in to your electric car."

The telling factor for someone acquiring an EV will be (and probably already is) a switch to economy-7 tarrifs.

Until such point as the EV fleet starts making "offpeak" power non-existent, the powercos probably won't gripe much.

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Re: Why they're pushing Smart Meters...

Or buy a bitcoin mining rig if you want something more believable. Bear in mind that plod won't ever have seen such a thing before, so anything that looks like it might pass as one will do.

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Charging Level 1 (120VAC), Level 2 (240VAC) Wire Communications Can Be Blocked

Charging Level 1 (120VAC), Level 2 (240VAC) "back-channel" options can easily be filtered using ferrite or inductor / capacitive filter technology. Such technology has been well developed and implemented by the anti-Smartmeter movements in California and other US groups.

The fast-charge cables that meet CHAdeMO (“CHArge de Move” or “charge for moving” - Toyota, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Fuji Heavy Industries and Tokyo Electric Power Company) or SAE Combined Charging System, or “Combo Cord” (American & German automotive engineers, in various committees of the Society of Automotive Engineers) cannot be filtered.

Of course, the car's CANbus (Controller Area Network)(Read: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CAN_bus) system will be also sending messages 'home' which are most easily inhibited by disconnecting the antenna cable under the hood. The FM, satellite, GPS use different co-ax lines to the same antenna. (Rental car users can prevent remote locking / engine killing by wrapping the roof-mounted mini-antennae with alumin(i)um foil).

At least the Revenuers won't know who to surcharge!

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Sharing?

It's not really 'sharing' if the Gov. requires it by law.

It's just more slurp, and more surveiilance - they'll be wanting to weigh your dumps next to track the strain on the sewage system - anonymised (or so they'll keep saying even after it's been proved it's possible to de-anonymised and is record on 3 government servers).

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Home charging data already shared

When I had my home EV charger fitted, one of the "conditions" of the government subsidy reducing it's price to near-zero was that there was 3G reception so the charger could "phone home" its charging data. The fact this is being extended to public charging points is hardly a surprise really. It's valuable and useful data for the industry.

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Devil

It's all chicanery

Are they as least wearing a rubber?

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