Kauai, one of Hawaii’s eight islands, is using a Tesla battery storage solution to power the island during the day and at night. The power packs allow the island to reduce its diesel fuel consumption and at the same time cut its energy costs.
Kauai is no stranger to renewable energy. For some time now the island has been powering itself by day using solar and other forms of renewable energy. Now, thanks to 272 Tesla power packs, the island can store the sun’s power generated during the day and draw on it after dark.
This innovative storage system means that the island is moving one step closer towards dispensing with fossil fuels altogether, as CNBC reported. The power packs are expected to save the Kauai Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC) 6.1 million litres of diesel fuel each year, which has traditionally been used to generate power after the sun goes down.
According to Tesla’s estimates, the power packs will reduce KIUC’s costs from 1.5 cents per kilowatt hour down to 13.9 cents. This price is fixed for the next 20 years.
Tesla’s CTO Jeffrey Brian is convinced that Kauai’s storage solution is not just for islands but is something that also be scaled across mainland America and the world. As he told CNBC in an interview, renewable energy is becoming more and more profitable each year and will be cheaper than fossil fuels in the long term.
The Kauai project consists of nearly 55,000 solar panels spread over 20 hectares. The project was carried out by SolarCity, Elon Musk’s solar energy firm that merged with Tesla last November.
Image credit: Tesla