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Tesla launches Virtual Power Plant program in Puerto Rico

Electric vehicle and clean energy company Tesla has unveiled a new virtual power plant (VPP) program in Puerto Rico, enabling owners of its Powerwall home batteries to earn money while supporting the electric grid.

The VPP links distributed battery systems in homes, enhancing grid reliability and resilience in Puerto Rico.

Participants in the Battery Emergency Demand Response Program allow their Powerwalls to provide emergency grid support when needed most, earning $1 for each kilowatt-hour (kWh) supplied during these events.

Customers can adjust their VPP backup reserve to determine the level of their contribution while ensuring an adequate backup energy supply for outages, Tesla explained.

Among the benefits Tesla cited for participants are the ability to stabilize Puerto Rico’s power grid by providing extra capacity, uniting as a “Tesla community,” ensuring energy security as Powerwalls will not discharge below the VPP’s backup reserve, and compensation for the electricity provided

Tesla Powerwall owners are eligible to participate in the Battery Emergency Demand Response Program if they have a residential service account registered with LUMA’s Net Energy Metering program and are not enrolled with another aggregator.

In a statement reflecting the potential of this initiative, Drew Baglino, senior vice president of Powertrain and Energy at Tesla, said: “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.”

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