Elizabeth McErlean Examines Future of Electric Vehicles in Illinois

April 13, 2018

McGuireWoods energy lawyer Elizabeth McErlean recently served on a panel of electric vehicle (EV) leaders at an Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) forum on EV use in Illinois and how to manage future recharging needs without stressing the power grid.

In the RTO Insider’s coverage of the April 4 forum, panelists agreed that while it will be years before battery-powered cars overtake internal combustion vehicles’ market dominance, it’s not too early for state policymakers to explore ways to stagger charging times to avoid debilitating demand spikes on the grid.

“Currently, Illinois’ framework is light in that it doesn’t heavily regulate electric vehicles,” McErlean said, noting that, in 2012, the Illinois legislature expressly exempted EV charging station owners from the definition of a public utility. With Illinois keeping regulations light to encourage the development of private EV charging stations, she said, charging station providers have room to grow, innovate and develop best practices.

McErlean, an associate based in Chicago, focuses her practice on energy regulation and advises clients on various regulatory and litigation matters. Before joining McGuireWoods, she was a legal and policy advisor to the ICC chairman.