The City of Santa Barbara has taken a major step towards green energy with the delivery of two Tesla Megapack batteries on March 16 to the Cater Water Treatment Plant. Funded by the Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP) of the California Public Utilities Commission, the battery systems are intended to provide backup power to the plant while managing demand on the electricity grid. This initiative is part of the city’s Strategic Energy Plan, which emphasizes ensuring power availability in the event of outages and emergencies.
Tesla Megapack is a powerful battery system designed to provide energy storage and support, helping to stabilize the grid and prevent outages. This allows for a cleaner grid that both protects the environment and saves money in the long run. The city of Santa Barbara initially signed a purchase agreement with Tesla in January 2021, allocating $3.2 million for two battery energy storage systems to supply backup power to two of the plant’s largest pump stations.
Unfortunately, several factors have impacted project costs, including the pandemic, supply shortages, and the recently passed Inflation Reduction Act, which made the city eligible for an additional million-dollar Investment Tax Credit. To accommodate the increased costs, the city renegotiated the contracts, assigning 90% of the $1,004,785 investment tax credit to Tesla while retaining the remaining 10%.
The battery storage system is expected to be completed and operational in the coming year, at which time the city will allocate the extra revenue in its annual budget. This is a major step forward for the city, which is now one step closer to achieving its goal of green energy. With the Tesla Megapack, the city will be able to increase energy efficiency and reduce energy costs, ensuring a brighter future for the city of Santa Barbara.