Tesla has announced the launch of a large-scale Virtual Power Plant (VPP) program in Puerto Rico, allowing Powerwall owners to participate in the territory’s Battery Emergency Demand Response Program. The VPP has notable benefits, as it helps support Puerto Rico’s power grid while providing compensation for homeowners participating in the program.
As noted by Tesla, the Puerto Rico VPP has the potential to become the world’s largest Virtual Power Plant to date with about 74,000 Powerwall owners. Such a network of batteries would likely aid the grid very well. In California, after all, a VPP comprised of about 7,400 Tesla Powerwall batteries was estimated to have the capacity to push 100 MWh to the grid. Depending on the number of Powerwall owners who participate in the program, the Puerto Rico VPP could easily dwarf the California VPP.
In Puerto Rico, 75k Powerwall owners can now get paid to support the grid in what could become the largest virtual power plant ever 🇵🇷🔋 pic.twitter.com/cBm9d6lzLc— Tesla Energy (@teslaenergy) November 2, 2023
Similar to other Virtual Power Plants that have been deployed, Tesla’s Puerto Rico VPP connects a network of battery units installed in residential homes that could be deployed as needed when the grid requires support. The utilization of the VPP could prevent power outages and reduce the need to rely on fossil fuel-powered peaker plants.
As noted by Tesla in a blog post about the program, those who participate in the Puerto Rico VPP are set to receive a compensation of $1 per kWh that is sent to the grid. Owners could also set their Powerwall’s VPP Backup Reserve so that they can determine the level of their contribution to the program. This way, participants can be assured that they have an adequate backup energy supply.
Excited to be working alongside our partners @sunnovaenergy @sunrun and Powerwall customers to make this the biggest VPP in the world (potential over 300MW) and rapidly reduce the frequency and duration of grid outages in Puerto Rico https://t.co/On8PVUYGKP— Drew Baglino (@baglino) November 2, 2023
The Puerto Rico VPP program is available to Tesla Powerwall owners who have a residential customer’s service account that is currently registered in LUMA’s Net Energy Metering program, as well as those who have a customer’s service account that is not simultaneously enrolled with another aggregator. Powerwall owners must also register for the program through the Tesla mobile app.
Participants in the program could expect a payout four times a year. As noted by Tesla on its official page for the Puerto Rico VPP, the company would be calculating each participants’ kWh contribution, which would then be shared with their utility provider. Once Tesla receives compensation from the utility, the payments will be passed along to the VPP participants.
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