Project Better Place: Danish Electric Car Network Plugs Into Wind to Create a “Virtual Oil Field”

Project Better Place: Creating a Virtual Oil Field“How can we make the world a better place? One electric car at a time.”

That’s the driving force (if you’ll excuse the pun) behind a partnership between a Danish energy company and Silicon Valley startup Project Better Place, announcing their plan to establish an electric car network in Denmark powered through 20,000 wind powered recharging stations. The cars will be recharged at night, when wind turbines are spinning but demand on the grid is low. DONG Energy will work with Project Better Place in the project, set to start in 2011 at a cost of $42.3 million. CEO of DONG Energy Anders Eldrup said, “With this project, we hope to contribute substantially to reducing CO2 emissions from Danish cars.”

The cars will be manufactured by Renault-Nissan using advanced lithium-ion battery packs produced in a joint venture by Nissan and NEC in Japan.

Project Better Place is the brainchild Israeli-American entrepreneur Shai Agassi, whose first project in Israel was announced last January.

Writing in his blog, Agassi likens the concept to a virtual oil field, “one that will never run dry, and will not kill us in the process…”

Project Better Place has secured $200 million in its first round of funding  and plans on focusing on developing a repeatable model of establishing a grid of recharging stations powered by local operating companies. The company is currently talking with several governments in hopes of creating more pilot projects.

One electric car at at time.

Tom is the founder, editor, and publisher of and the TDS Environmental Media Network. He has been a contributor for Triple Pundit since 2007. Tom has also written for Slate, Earth911, the Pepsico Foundation, Cleantechnia, Planetsave, and many other sustainability-focused publications. He is a member of the Society of Environmental Journalists