Madeira to Become Smart Island, Energy Independent

Renault is working towards making the Madeira island of Porto Santo in Portugal a “smart island”. In a bid for energy independence, the pilot program is using Renault’s Zoe electric vehicles (EVs), home batteries, smart charging and vehicle-to-grid (V2E) energy storage.

The “smart island” project will be rolled out in three phases:

Phase 1: Twenty Porto Santo volunteers will get fourteen Zoes and six Kango Z.E. utility vans to use daily, and will be able to use forty new connected public and private charging stations set up by Renault and local utility Empresa de Electricitade da Madeira (EEM);

Phase 2: In late 2018, the EV’s will become part of the grid by feeding electricity back into it during times of peak consumption;

Phase 3: “Second-life” stationary batteries that have been recycled from Renault’s Zoe and other EVs will be made available to residents of the island. These old batteries are insufficient for the power demands of an EV, but will now serve as stationary backups for the power grid on Porto Santo, storing energy produced during high wind and sun days by the solar and wind generators on the island and pumping it back into the grid as needed.

“We are delighted to be teaming up with EEM today to establish this unprecedented smart electric ecosystem which demonstrates to what extent the electric revolution is changing our everyday lives beyond just transport,” said Eric Feunteun, electric vehicles and new business program director. “Our aim is to build a model that can be carried over to other islands, eco-districts and cities, while consistently striving to achieve large-scale rollout of electric mobility solutions that are affordable for all.The Madeiro project is one of the most complete electric vehicle green initiatives ever. It brings together all the different ecosystems to create a zero emissions, carbon-free island.”