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Member since: Thu Feb 28, 2008, 10:49 AM
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Tesla launches phase 3 of its virtual power plant, soon 4,000 homes will be connected with Powerwall

South Austrialia is a prime canidate for this program as they average $.36 per kWh.

Tesla is launching phase 3 of its massive virtual power plant in South Australia and confirmed that soon almost 4,000 homes with Powerwalls and solar will be connected to the system.

A virtual power plant consists of connecting several small distributed energy assets, like residential solar panel systems and home battery packs, and use them together to provide larger grid services.

With its Powerwall being a popular home energy storage system, Tesla has been an early adopter of the concept and planned to deploy it on a large scale in South Australia.

The project’s origin story is interesting.

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 low-income families.

The region suffers from a very unstable grid and electricity costs are so high that some families have to decide between keeping the lights on or going hungry.

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.

A few months later, in July of 2018, Tesla deployed the first 100 Powerwalls with solar for the new virtual power plant and focused on reducing the cost of electricity for low-income households.

By the end of the year, the project moved to its second phase and Tesla started deploying 1,000 more systems as part of the virtual power plant.

While only a fraction of the total planned capacity of the virtual power plant has been deployed, they already started testing some grid services with the current system.

Earlier this year, the Australian Energy Market Operator, the agency behind the project, has released an in-depth insight report on the virtual power plant and it showed promising results to stabilize the grid while lowering electricity costs for participants.

Report at this link - https://electrek.co/2020/04/07/tesla-virtual-power-plant-powerwall-report/

Tesla is now Moving to Phase 3
Robyn Denholm, Tesla’s chairwoman who also happens to be Australian, announced that Tesla is moving to phase 3 of its virtual power plant:

“Tesla is taking the next step towards accelerating Australia’s transition to sustainable energy with the launch of phase three of the South Australia Virtual Power Plant (SA VPP), growing the program towards 50,000 South Australian homes”

Phase 3 will add another 3,000 homes to the system.

Denholm added:

“A growing number of Housing SA homes – soon to be 4000 – as well as private households via the Tesla Energy Plan are connected to the SA VPP and benefiting from the lowest priced electricity rate in the state while also contributing to a more resilient grid.”

Tesla is going to pay $18 million to deploy the battery and solar systems in phase 3.

The households will receive the systems at no cost and will pay for the electricity from them at a rate more than 20% lower than from the grid.

The South Australian government is contributing $10 million along with $8.2 million from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and a $30 million loan support from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC).

The goal remain to eventually have 50,000 homes with Powerwalls and solar connected to the virtual power plant.
Posted by Finishline42 | Mon Sep 7, 2020, 07:59 AM (5 replies)

Alabama Public Service Commission Upholds and Increases 'Sun Tax' on Solar Power Users

Not the direction a Southern State should be taking, IMO. (Covers the southern part of Alabama, as TVA covers the northern part of AL).

At some point will it prove to be counter-productive to stopping Solar? Does the est $9,000 additional in fees over the life of the system actually provide an incentive towards the purchase of a Powerwall or equivalent and get off the grid entirely?

Energy regulators in Alabama voted Tuesday to uphold what critics have dubbed a "sun tax" on people who put solar panels on their homes and businesses across much of the state.

The Alabama Public Service Commission, which regulates the investor-owned Alabama Power Co., not only rejected a petition by the Southern Environmental Law Center to end the company's extra monthly fee for customers with their own solar systems, but raised that fee by 8 percent.

Alabama Power provides electricity to more than 1.4 million customers across the southern two-thirds of the state, including the cities of Birmingham, Montgomery and Mobile.

The Alabama Power solar fee is part of what clean-energy advocates have described as among the most regressive solar power policies in the country. Losing the decision after a two-year legal battle before an administrative law judge and the commission was a blow, said attorney Keith Johnston, who directs the law center's Alabama office.


The utility has been charging a $5 per kilowatt monthly fee. For an average 5-kilowatt rooftop solar system, the fee results in an additional $300 charge per year, or approximately $9,000 over the life of the panels, slashing solar customers' average savings in half, the law center contends.

The new fee will be $5.41 per kilowatt monthly


Illinois Nuclear plants shutting down in Fall of 2021

I am conflicted on this. It's what I have been saying though, the cost to run a nuclear plant keeps them from running as much as they need to to keep costs down.

Wind farms contributed to only 7% of Illinois electricity in 2019 so it would seem most of this is from Nat Gas plants.

From one of the following tweets:

Together the plants employ 1,500+ full-time & another 2,000+ skilled workers during refueling outages, most from local union halls. The plants pay nearly $63 million in taxes annually to support local schools, fire, police and other services.


Improvements in Windmills

Big changes as they improve.


Costs going down


Utilization going up


Netherlands up to 25% renewable

This is posted by Kees van der Leun @Sustainable2050

In the Netherlands, ~25% of our electricity is now from renewables, up from just 10% six years ago.
And we're working on tripling that share to ~75% by 2030!

There is a graph supporting this on Twitter (I think), but it's in a language I don't read.

But the main point is Wind and Solar are a process. There are those that say it's not enough to count. They have been saying that for as long as I have been on the forum - over 12 years. But every year there are more wind and solar assets put online. It keeps building, better windmills and solar panels are developed and the cost goes down.

More than doubling in the Netherlands in just 6 years. Progress a MW at a time.

BTW, can someone show me how to post a tweet here? Everytime I do it it's just a bunch of code and not the tweet.

Weekly update - Good Climate News

Weekly update from Twitter

Good climate news of the week
1 World’s coal falls for 1st time
2 Bangladesh may close 26 or 29 planned coal plants
3 Canada’s oil-sands emissions intensity down
4 BP announces oil & gas will fall by 40%, while its #renewables will rise 20-fold
5 EU eyes higher renewable targets

Last week

1 Germany: Green power hits record 50.2% of consumption in first half of 2020
2 UK: Largest pension fund to divest from fossil fuels
3 UK: Offshore wind farms set to be the 1st in the world to pay money back to consumers
4 Deutsche Bank exits coal

From >>> @AssaadRazzouk

So this is what it takes to keep Nuclear Plants open in Ohio

Just a few bucks more for the rate payers in Ohio.

The powerful Republican speaker of the Ohio House and four associates were arrested Tuesday in a $60 million federal bribery case connected to a taxpayer-funded bailout of Ohio’s two nuclear power plants.

Hours after FBI agents raided Speaker Larry Householder’s farm, U.S. Attorney David DeVillers described the ploy as “likely the largest bribery scheme ever perpetrated against the state of Ohio.”

Gov. Mike DeWine, also a Republican, called on Householder to resign immediately, saying it would be impossible for him to be an effective legislative leader given the charges against him.

Householder was one of the driving forces behind the nuclear plants' financial rescue, which added a new fee to every electricity bill in the state and directed over $150 million a year through 2026 to the plants near Cleveland and Toledo.


Previous attempts to bail out the nuclear plants had stalled in the Legislature before Householder became speaker. Months after taking over, he rolled out a new plan to subsidize the plants and eliminate renewable energy incentives. The proposal was approved a year ago despite opposition from many business leaders and the manufacturing industry.

Generation Now, a group that investigators said was controlled by Householder and successfully fought an effort to put a repeal of the bailout law on Ohio’s ballot, was charged as a corporation in the case.


City of Sydney flicks the switch to 100% green power

Accomplished via Power Purchase Agreements.

All the City of Sydney’s operations – including street lights, pools, sports fields, depots, buildings and the historic Sydney Town Hall – will now be run on 100% renewable electricity sourced from local solar and wind projects. The switch is part of a $60 million deal with electricity retailer Flow Power, the biggest standalone green energy deal of its kind by a council in Australia.

The deal is projected to save the City up to half a million dollars a year over the next 10 years, and reduce carbon emissions by around 20,000 tonnes a year – the equivalent to the power consumption of more than 6,000 households. The City calculates that the new deal will see it reach its 2030 of reducing emissions by 70% by 2024, six years early.


The power purchase agreement will see the City source renewable energy from the 120 MW Bomen Solar Farm in Wagga Wagga, the 270 MW Sapphire Wind Farm near Inverell, and the 3 MW Shoalhaven Solar Farm, a not-for profit community-owned solar scheme near Nowra on the south-east NSW coast. The deal will see three-quarters of the City’s power sourced from wind generation and one-quarter from solar.

Posted by Finishline42 | Wed Jul 1, 2020, 02:50 PM (2 replies)

Radioactivity hike seen in northern Europe; source unknown

Haven't seen this anywhere else.

Nordic authorities say they detected slightly increased levels of radioactivity in northern Europe this month that Dutch officials said may be from a source in western Russia and may “indicate damage to a fuel element in a nuclear power plant.”

But Russian news agency TASS, citing a spokesman with the state nuclear power operator Rosenergoatom., reported that the two nuclear power plans in northwestern Russia haven’t reported any problems.

The Leningrad plant near St. Petersburg and the Kola plant near the northern city of Murmansk, “operate normally, with radiation levels being within the norm,” Tass said.

The Finnish, Norwegian and Swedish radiation and nuclear safety watchdogs said this week they’ve spotted small amounts of radioactive isotopes harmless to humans and the environment in parts of Finland, southern Scandinavia and the Arctic.

The Swedish Radiation Safety Authority said Tuesday that “it is not possible now to confirm what could be the source of the increased levels” of radioactivity or from where a cloud, or clouds, containing radioactive isotopes that has allegedly been blowing over the skies of northern Europe originated. Its Finnish and Norwegian counterparts also haven’t speculated about a potential source.

But the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment in the Netherlands said Friday it analyzed the Nordic data and “these calculations show that the radionuclides (radioactive isotopes) come from the direction of Western Russia.”

The radionuclides are artificial, that is to say they are man-made. The composition of the nuclides may indicate damage to a fuel element in a nuclear power plant,” the Dutch agency said, adding that ”a specific source location cannot be identified due to the limited number of measurements.

Posted by Finishline42 | Wed Jul 1, 2020, 01:11 PM (7 replies)

I want to share some info RE: V2G - I have some questions

It's an investment advisory on Tesla but I was wondering if it's realistic or he's just a dreamer.

First question relates to this >>>
The Tesla tri-motor Cyber Truck can hold enough electrical energy to power a home for more than one week. And if you run out, you could drive the truck down to a local supercharger, fill up with electrons, drive home and have power for another week of the utility being shut down. In fire country the tri-motor Cyber Truck will sell like hotcakes once V2G is enabled.

Power a home for more than a week? Is this real? I know it depends on how big a house, etc but scale-wise is it even realistic?

2nd Question >>>

To connect existing cars to the grid, Tesla will need to tell customers that when their battery capacity drops to around 75%, they can simply have the battery pack swapped out for a new million-mile battery pack. The money to be made from V2G is so huge for Tesla that I expect Tesla will tell customers this battery swap will be very low cost or even free of charge.

This I completely doubt. Everything I have heard is that it's very difficult to replace the battery pack on a Tesla - but maybe the Cyber-truck is designed differently?

3rd Q >>>

I also expect this is why J.B. Straubel is opening Redwood Materials to recycle lithium ion batteries. Today, there aren't enough batteries to recycle so opening this company makes no sense (to me). But if Tesla opens V2G to all Tesla vehicles, it will begin to generate a lot of batteries in need of recycling. I think they are building the recycling facility they will soon need, in advance of needing it.

This has always been the down the road reality. One of the main points detractors of EV's has been what to do with all the batteries. And the answer is always if there are enough of them somebody will built a business on recycling them.

4th and last Q >>>

It remains to be learned how much income individuals will be given out of the funds derived from the utilities. A friend with 54kWh of Tesla Power Wall batteries said he is supposed to receive around $100/mo for grid services. This means the Tesla Model Y and 3 would earn around $100 per month, the 100kWh Cyber truck will earn around $200/mo and the tri-motor Cyber Truck will earn around $400/mo.

Again I doubt these are real numbers but if they were I doubt that you could count on them staying this high for the life of the vehicle.

Although if you have a Tesla with a million mile battery, it would make it worth keeping long after if was drivable.

link to article.
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