Tesla’s plan to deploy 50,000 Powerwalls in Australia in order to create a giant virtual power plant is moving forward with 1,000 more homes as part of the second phase.
The project is the biggest of its kind and it would dwarf any other stationary energy storage deployment if it is ever completed.
It came around after Elon Musk visited South Australia following the launch of its giant battery system in the state.
Musk gave an interview during which he was informed of the significant hardship that Australia’s high electricity prices are putting on families.
Visibly affected by the issue, Musk vowed that Tesla would “work harder” to help solve the problem.
A few months later, Tesla announced that it reached a deal with the South Australian government to install solar arrays and Powerwalls on up to 50,000 homes.
The deal was jeopardized after a new government was elected in the state a few weeks later, but they have since come around and confirmed that they will be moving forward with Tesla’s initiative as long as it is financed successfully.
In July, Tesla deployed the first 100 Powerwalls with solar for the new virtual power plant and focus on reducing the cost of electricity for low-income households.
It is already having a great impact for the families. Local news featured a public housing tenant in Adelaide who was spending over $500 every quarter for electricity and she has now seen her bill reduced to $175 since the installation of the system.
Now the government announced that they are moving forward with the “second phase”, which includes 1,000 homes.
Minister van Holst Pellekaan said:
“The VPP will deliver cheaper electricity to some of South Australia’s most disadvantaged households whilst increasing the reliability of the state’s electricity network,”
They have also announced Energy Locals as a new retail partner in the project to help Tesla and the government deploy the systems.
The 1,000 homes that will be part of the second phase of the VPP still need to be SA Housing Trust properties to facilitate the direct impact for low-income families.
With the upcoming third phase, they say that they will open up the process to other South Australian households.
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