Last week, Green Mountain Power (GMP) and Renewable Energy Vermont (REV) teamed up on what they are calling a first-of-its-kind opportunity in the country to deliver innovation and carbon reductions to customers through a new Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) program.
The program will offer the country’s largest upfront incentive from a utility for customers with home batteries to share access to their stored energy and drive down costs for all customers. Customers can enroll electric vehicle (EV) chargers, too.
GMP customers who have their own home batteries can choose immediate up-front payment of $850 per kilowatt of energy storage enrolled in the BYOD program. They may also choose to receive ongoing bill credits in exchange for sharing access to their stored energy with GMP. The utility will call on that customer’s stored energy to reduce demand on the grid during peak usage times. Peak usage times are when wholesale electricity prices are the highest, so by using some of their customers’ stored energy, GMP will be lowering costs for all customers, said the utility.
The program is capped at 2 MW of storage or about 600 customers, said GMP.
The incentive pays for itself in the savings GMP will generate through reducing that peak power demand, according to the company and GMP said that it passes those cost savings on to all customers.
GMP is also incentivizing more grid resilience in areas of the state where it is needed most, offering customers in those areas who add batteries to existing solar systems an extra $150 per kilowatt. Customers enrolling EV chargers in BYOD won’t get upfront payments, but will get bill credits of $10 per month while in the program.
The new BYOD program is part of a partnership between REV and GMP to increase the availability of products and services to help individuals, organizations and groups make energy transformation in a quicker, more coordinated way to fight climate change.
The program will cut carbon while increasing grid resiliency and value for both participants and all GMP customers. The new incentive enhances GMP’s existing Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) incentive that launched last year.
Olivia Campbell Andersen, REV Executive Director said, “Working together while also saving money through renewable energy technologies is the way to meet our climate commitments and create more resilient communities. Vermonters can work with any of our local business REV members and GMP, and also choose among several different connected products to participate.”
Governor Phil Scott said that the program “reflects the ingenuity of our state as we work to attract more families.”
Vermont solar installation company SunCommon said it expects to see interest in batteries jump because of the enhanced BYOD program. Adding energy storage to a solar installation significantly increases efficiency and resiliency – and making it more affordable will only accelerate adoption. “Customers have been asking for a program just like this, and we love being able to help more Vermonters increase their energy independence by generating and storing clean power from the sun, right at home,” said Tom Berry, SunCommon’s Vice President of Marketing and Sales.
Mary Powell, President and CEO at GMP who spoke at POWERGEN International in 2014 when the organization named her Power Generation Women of the Year said, “Go Team Vermont! We’re so thrilled to be working together with our fellow REV members to increase value for customers, while expanding Vermont’s network of stored energy.” She added:
“There is an urgent need to fight climate change and that means energy transformation right now, and partnerships like this one with customers and the renewable energy community are key to achieving our shared goals for Vermont. Together, we can use energy as a force for good and make a big difference for residents, the state, and the planet.”