Vermont utility teams with Tesla to offer home battery installment plan

Dive Brief:

  • Green Mountain Power (GMP) has teamed up with Tesla Motors to offer a home battery option it said is the first of its kind in the country. The utility and battery company aim to install 500 systems inits service territory next year, Smart Grid News reports. 
  • The Tesla Powerwall will provide four to six hours of backup power for a home, according to GMP; and the program will begin with 10 customers in Rutland, before being offered to customers all around Vermont.
  • The 7 kWh batteries will cost $6,500, but the utility is offering three payment options including a shared system that will be installed with no up-front cost.

Dive Insight:

One of the big questions surrounding Tesla's home battery options was cost; the actual systems were announced with low price tags, but none of that included installation. And in the months since Tesla unveiled the battery storage systems, competitors have been looking to provide similar power assurances and at lower costs.

Tesla announced the Powerwall earlier this year, available in two sizes: a 10 kilowatt-hour battery for backup applications and the 7 kilowatt-hour battery for daily cycling applications. The 10 kWh battery’s announced price for installers was $3500, while the price for installers on the 7 kWh battery was announced at $3000.

Green Mountain Power is now offering the 7 kWh battery system to customers, and at a total installed cost of $6,500. It's not quite as attractive as the initial announcement, but the utility has developed three payment options that allow the system to benefit the wider grid while getting it installed at no up-front cost.

The system can be paired with rooftop solar, but PV panels are not necessary to utilize the system as it can also store power from the grid.

"This is a game changer that will help fully leverage solar to the benefit of all with cost savings, while empowering Vermonters to generate, store and use energy closer to the home," GMP President and CEO Mary Powell said in a statement.

Customers who share access of the battery will pay about $37.50 a month with no upfront cost. One can also purchase the Powerwall for about $6500, share access with GMP and get a monthly bill credit of $31.76. Or customers can buy the Powerwall outright from GMP with no shared access for about $6500.

The first shipment of batteries is expected to reach Vermont in January, with a total of 500 arriving over a period of months. GMP said it will partner with 10 customers initially to pilot the technology, primarily in Rutland.

"This is community energy at the most local level, helping to increase resiliency for customers while we lower costs through innovations like battery storage," said Powell, adding that the utility is working "to accelerate the adoption of energy transformations in homes and businesses that are cost effective, use dramatically less energy and can operate more independently of the grid."

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Filed Under: Energy Storage Distributed Energy Efficiency & Demand Response Corporate News
Top image credit: Tesla