An increase in electric vehicles could lead to a power demand of up to 18GW by 2050 in the UK, says National Grid.
The estimation is the equivalent to more than five Hinkley Point C nuclear facilities and it is expected that there may be as many as nine million electric vehicles on roads by 2030.
In its annual report titled 'Future Energy Scenarios', National Grid explained the potential use of energy in the future and its source of production.
Improvements in the use of smart technology in electric vehicles and the ability to charge at off-peak times in key locations could increase the demand by 6GW by 2050, said the report.
The UK currently produces 34GW of renewable energy, which is more than a third of total installed capacity.
National Grid energy insights head Marcus Stewart was quoted by Belfast Telegraph as saying: “The energy landscape is changing rapidly and becoming more diverse and complex. An energy system with high levels of distributed and renewable generation is already a reality.
“Electric vehicles are one of many new technologies that are rapidly transforming the energy sector. Technical progress and cost reductions in storage and solar panels have driven major change in a short space of time.”
"This new era of network operation is exciting and manageable, but it is important there is investment in smart technologies and electricity infrastructure, and a coordinated approach across the whole electricity system".
According to National Grid, the scenarios were not a forecast but simply intended to spur debates on the future power requirements in the country.