Tesla could soon be powering homes in Texas if the state approves the electric vehicle manufacturer’s application to do so. This application was foreshadowed when Tesla began construction on a secretive 100-megawatt energy storage project in Angleton, Texas, 40 miles south from Houston, the Lone Star State’s largest city. Other electricity storage facilities owned by Tesla exist in South Australia and California, but so far no word has been given on if or when those facilities will be used to power neighboring areas.
Further foreshadowing includes February’s deep freeze that left millions of Texans without power for days at a time. During this, Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who had recently moved Tesla operations from California to Texas, took to Twitter to insult the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT). “Not earning that R,” he said of the group, which manages approximately 90 percent of the Texas power grid. Musk’s comment points to his ongoing interest in the state’s power, and now it seems he’s decided to do something about it.
According to Texas Monthly, Musk made an application in mid-August with the Public Utility Commission of Texas to sell electricity on the retail market via Tesla’s energy subsidiary called Tesla Energy Ventures. The earliest the filing could be approved is sometime in November. People close to the deal have stated that Tesla could stand out in an oversaturated, deregulated market filled with over one hundred companies vying for Texan power needs. Tesla is also hoping to craft two utility-scale batteries for wholesale power companies in Texas.
There is no report yet on how much Tesla Power would cost nor how it would generate its electricity. As of right now, the highest-rated energy provider in Texas is Constellation which stands at a 4.5-star rating on electricityrates.com. Constellation provides entirely renewable packages, natural gas, and standard electricity alongside several business plans. It is evident that Tesla, should it wish to make its presence known, would have to provide better offers for Texans than that company.
Ways in which Tesla could stand out from the competition include a partnership with a broadband company to provide a two-in-one package for consumers. If the energy is totally eco friendly, which considering it’s Musk is likely, this could help Tesla make waves as a good clean energy source. Additionally, a low price would always be welcome to any consumer. Other electricity companies also offer to pay users for excess electricity generated by solar panels and wind turbines, which could potentially work as an incentive, albeit not an original one. Free charging for electric vehicles would also work wonderfully, though it all hinges on Tesla’s application being accepted in Texas.
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