Join the Tesla Virtual Power Plant
Participate in the Emergency Load Reduction Program (ELRP) pilot offered by Southern California Edison (SCE) and support the grid while also earning compensation and maintaining your energy security.
Help create the largest distributed battery in the world and keep California’s energy clean and reliable. Opt-in to the Tesla Virtual Power Plant (VPP) with SCE and your Powerwall will be dispatched when the grid needs emergency support. Through the ELRP pilot, you will receive $2 for every additional kWh your Powerwall delivers during an event. Adjust your Backup Reserve to set your contribution, while maintaining backup energy for outages. Learn more about program benefits, eligibility, compensation and more below.
California experienced an unprecedented heat wave starting Labor Day weekend that caused record levels of electricity demand and grid stress. Thanks to participating Powerwall owners, the Tesla Virtual Power Plant proved to be a growing and consistent resource for California during this time.
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Benefits of Participation
- Stabilize California’s Grid: The extra capacity your Powerwall provides could help avoid or reduce blackouts in a severe emergency. This way, Powerwall can keep the lights on for both you and your community.
- Clean the Grid: Tesla will dispatch your Powerwall when the grid is in critical need of additional power. That is when the least efficient generators would typically come online.
- Unite as a Tesla Community: Team up with other Powerwall owners who are accelerating the world’s transition to sustainable energy and help build what could be the largest distributed battery in the world. As part of the VPP, your Powerwall will have an outsized positive impact on the grid over traditional demand response programs.
- Maintain Your Energy Security: Powerwall will discharge during VPP events but won’t discharge below your Backup Reserve. Adjust your Backup Reserve to control your contribution while maintaining backup energy for outages.
- Earn Compensation: Through the ELRP pilot, you will receive $2 for every additional kWh your Powerwall provides during an event. You don’t have to change your energy usage behavior to participate.
Tesla Powerwall owners with or without solar are eligible to participate in SCE’s ELRP pilot if they:
- Receive electric services from SCE or are Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) customers located within the SCE service territory.
- Have a residential service account.
- Are not enrolled in a conflicting SCE or non-utility demand response program or another Virtual Power Plant.
- Have a valid Rule 21 interconnection agreement.
You will have the opportunity to sign up in the Tesla app and SCE will review your information to determine eligibility. If you are determined to be eligible, you will be enrolled automatically.
You may need to take additional actions if the app shows:
- “The information you provided could not be found.”
Re-enter your utility account information and make sure your name, phone number and account number match up with your bill. View more details in the FAQ section below.
- “You are not eligible to enroll at this time.”
This indicates that you do not meet the eligibility criteria above. You can contact SCE to determine the reason and potentially take action to address the eligibility conflict so that you can re-apply.
The most common reason for ineligibility is due to participating in a conflicting demand response program. If you are still interested in enrolling in the Tesla VPP, you will first need to disenroll from the conflicting demand response program. Contact the conflicting program provider directly to disenroll and have them provide an effective disenrollment date.
Tesla and SCE will call upon the Virtual Power Plant when the California grid operator, CAISO, declares an alert, warning or emergency in response to challenging grid conditions. Tesla and SCE may also call events at other times to meet the program minimum of 20 hours of events. These additional events may include responses to CAISO Flex Alerts.
What to Expect
Before the Event
When an event is scheduled, you will receive a push notification informing you of event times. You can expect your Powerwall system to prioritize charging and preparing for an event after the event is scheduled. An event may be scheduled up to a day ahead, but it’s also possible that an event will be scheduled with much less notice.
During the Event
When the event begins, you will receive a push notification reminding you of the event end time, and your Powerwall will begin discharging to support the grid. Your Powerwall will discharge until the event ends, or when it discharges to your selected Backup Reserve level. Powerwall will export a safe amount of power, which may be similar to onsite solar export. This may not be the full power capacity of your Powerwall.
After the Event
At completion of the event, Powerwall will resume normal operation.
Controlling Your Participation
Powerwall gives you three options for controlling your participation in VPP events:
Set your Backup Reserve
Powerwall will not dispatch to an energy level below your Backup Reserve. Setting your Backup Reserve is the best way to control how much energy you elect for participation and how much you maintain in case of an outage.
Opt-out of a Single Event
When an event is scheduled or active, Powerwall gives you the option to opt-out of the event through the Tesla app. When you opt-out, Powerwall will stop reacting to the event, and resume normal operation.
You have a VPP participation toggle in the ‘Settings’ menu of the Tesla app. If you turn this off, your Powerwall system will not react to events when they are scheduled, and you will not be notified of the events. You are still enrolled in the program, however, and can resume your participation at any time by toggling your participation back on.
Unenrolling from the program takes away your opportunity to earn money supporting the grid and is not necessary to stop unwanted use of your Powerwall. The Controlling Your Participation section above can help you achieve a level of participation that works for you.
Should you want to unenroll from the program, contact SCE or Tesla Customer Support.
The Tesla and SCE ELRP pilot will compensate you $2 for every additional kWh that your Powerwall delivers during an event beyond typical behavior.
Your compensation depends on:
- The participating energy capacity of your system, which depends on the number of Powerwalls and your Backup Reserve. Lowering your Backup Reserve will make you eligible for greater participation, and may allow you to earn more.
- How fully charged your Powerwall is for the event. There may not be enough solar energy or time to fully charge the Powerwall before an event.
- How much your Powerwall would typically charge or discharge during the event time.
- Whether the Powerwall can export all available energy during the event. Powerwall may not have time to safely discharge all participating energy during the event. Powerwall may need to limit exports to safe levels, typically similar to solar export levels.
At the end of the season, which is typically towards the end of the year, SCE will calculate your contribution and incentive payment from your Powerwall data. Your payment will come from Tesla, and you can expect payment before the end of March 2023.
Frequently Asked Questions
What information is needed to successfully enroll?
Many customers will be asked to provide some information so that SCE can identify the right utility account and determine eligibility.
Where we have information, we will pre-populate the forms, but it is important that the information you provide is the same as the information in your SCE account.
If you don’t know the right information, the best place to check is your SCE bill. See the below example to locate information quickly on your bill:
- Service account number
- Meter number
How do I ensure that I will have enough energy for backup power?
A push notification will inform you of an upcoming ELRP event. You can adjust your Backup Reserve level then or at any time, based on your own risk of outage.
If rotating outages occur due to grid emergencies, and your home is in a curtailed block, an outage can last about one to one and a half hours. Other grid blackouts or Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) events may be longer in duration. If outages are planned, check with your utility for the expected duration.
If an outage occurs during the event, your Powerwall will still provide you with energy security using its stored energy.
Will participation in this program impact my electric bill?
Tesla expects most events this summer to occur during typical peak hours for many Time-of-Use rate plans. Participating in the event will shift energy exports to periods that are later in the day compared to typical exports. If you are eligible for compensation under a Net Energy Metering (NEM) program, you may earn different credit for exporting at different times.
Emergency Load Reduction Program: SCE & Tesla Virtual Power Plant Customer Participation Agreement
Thank you for your interest in Southern California Edison Company’s (“SCE”) Emergency Load Reduction Program pilot—Virtual Power Plant Aggregation (the “ELRP A.4 Program”) in conjunction with Tesla, Inc. (“Tesla”). The ELRP A.4 Program is open to SCE residential customers who have one or more Tesla Powerwall(s) (“Device”) that Tesla can remotely control during an ELRP event (“Event”). Participation is subject to your agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions with SCE and Tesla (“Terms”), and both SCE and Tesla are relying on your commitments in these Terms.
By clicking “Accept Enrollment” you (“Participant”) acknowledge that you have read these Terms and agree to be legally bound by them.
SCE in its sole discretion shall determine Participant’s eligibility to participate in the ELRP A.4 Program. Participant agrees that:
a. Participant receives electric service on an SCE residential rate schedule.
b. Participant is located in SCE’s service territory.
c. Participant has an SCE electric SmartConnect meter or interval meter.
d. Participant is not simultaneously enrolled in another demand response program or any other ELRP sub-group offered by SCE, third-party demand response provider or Community Choice Aggregator.
e. Participant has an active and valid SCE Rule 21 interconnection agreement.
- Authority and Representations
Participant may not enroll in the ELRP A.4 Program unless Participant has the authority to control the Device and is the customer of record for the SCE service account associated with the address at which the Device is installed. By accepting these Terms, Participant confirms that Participant has authority to control the Device and is the customer of record for SCE and that Tesla and SCE can rely on those confirmations in connection with the ELRP A.4 Program.
- Participant Device Control Requirements
By accepting these Terms, Participant grants Tesla remote access to control the enrolled Device to automatically charge and/or discharge the Device during an ELRP Event. Other than Participant’s own operation of the Device, Tesla will have exclusive access to the Device. Participant will have the ability to set a minimum level of charge as a backup reserve (“Backup Reserve”). Tesla will not draw Participant Device’s state of charge below Participant’s designated Backup Reserve and will not discharge Participant’s Device when the state of charge is below the Backup Reserve. Except for honoring Participant’s Backup Reserve level, Tesla may charge or discharge the Participant’s Device to any level seven days per week during the hours of 4:00 PM and 9:00 PM during Participant's enrollment in the ELRP A.4 Program.
- ELRP Term
Participant's enrollment in the ELRP A.4 Program begins upon SCE’s confirmation to Tesla that the Participant is eligible for the ELRP A.4 Program and shall continue until December 31, 2023, unless expressly extended by SCE or terminated sooner.
- ELRP Customer Events
Events will be triggered the day ahead or day of an Event based on Flex Alerts or CAISO Energy Emergency Alerts or at SCE’s discretion between May 1 and October 31 and Event hours can be between 4:00 PM and 9:00 PM.
The California Public Utilities Commission has authorized utilities to compensate ELRP participants in the amount of $2 for every kilowatt-hour in reduced use or energy exported to the grid during ELRP events, based on a defined baseline. For purposes of these Terms, SCE will provide such compensation to Tesla based on Participant’s demonstrated performance during ELRP events, and Tesla will in turn pay Participant $2 for every incremental kilowatt-hour based upon the Event baselines and load using the telemetry data of Participant’s Device. Tesla will directly pay the Participant any compensation earned on an annual basis, or on a more frequent basis as determined by Tesla. Those payments, if any, are the only compensation that Participant will receive from Tesla for participation in the ELRP A.4 Program. Participant is responsible for all other costs that may involve participating in the ELRP A.4 Program, including but not limited to, the cost of electricity to charge Participant’s Device and the general use of Participant’s Device. Tesla is responsible for making all payments to Participant related to the ELRP A.4 Program. Participant shall have no recourse to SCE for any payments, and SCE disclaims responsibility for ensuring that Participant’s data is sufficient to determine Participant’s eligibility for the incentive payment, or that the funds it provides to Tesla in respect of Participant’s participation in the ELRP A.4 Program will be paid to Participant.
- Participant Device Data and Other Information
- No Warranty; Disclaimer
SCE and Tesla expressly disclaim all warranties of any kind relating to the ELRP A.4 Program, whether express, implied or statutory including but not limited to any implied warranties for conditions, merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title, non-infringement or misappropriation of intellectual property rights.
- Limitation of Liability
In no event will Tesla or SCE be liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, special or consequential damages, arising in connection with the ELRP A.4 Program, including but not limited to Participant’s Device reduced state of charge during a power outage causing a loss of power or any other loss of power for whatever reason. If Participant is dissatisfied with the ELRP A.4 Program, any of these Terms, or believes Tesla or SCE has breached these Terms in any way, Participant’s sole and exclusive remedy is to disenroll from the ELRP A.4. Program. Participant may disenroll in the ELRP A.4 Program at any time by contacting Tesla Customer Support.
a. Termination By SCE. SCE has the sole discretion to terminate a Participant’s participation in the ELRP A.4 Program, at any time and without cause. Tesla will notify Participant either via the Tesla app, by electronic mail or otherwise in writing.
b. Termination by Participant. Participant may terminate their enrollment in the ELRP A.4 Program at any time for any reason by contacting Tesla Customer Support.
c. Participant will receive compensation owed under Section 6 of the Terms for participation in the ELRP A.4 Program through the date of termination.
a. Entire Agreement. These Terms are the entire agreement between SCE, Tesla and Participant concerning the ELRP A.4 Program.
b. No Assignment. These Terms may not be assigned by Participant without SCE’s prior written consent.
c. Severability and Waiver. If any provision herein is invalid or unenforceable, the remaining provisions will remain in full force and effect.
d. Survival. Termination in the ELRP A.4 Program will not affect the obligations and rights under these Terms which are intended to survive such termination.
e. Governing Law. This Agreement is governed by California law.
f. Amendments. These Terms may be changed by Tesla from time to time upon five days’ notice to Participant, which will be sent to Participant by email or the Tesla app.
- Arbitration Requirement
Agreement to Arbitrate
Please read this part carefully because it means you are agreeing that any unresolved dispute between you and Tesla or you and SCE (or between you and both Tesla and SCE) will not be decided by a judge or jury in a public courtroom, but instead by a single arbitrator in a private arbitration.
If you have a dispute arising out of or relating to any aspect of the relationship between you and Tesla, Inc. or its affiliates (which we call “Tesla”) and/or between you and Southern California Edison Company or its affiliates (“SCE”), send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org (for Tesla) or elrp.sce.com (for SCE) describing your dispute and how you would like it resolved. If it is not resolved within 60 days from the date of your email, you agree that your dispute can only be resolved by a single arbitrator in an arbitration administered by the American Arbitration Association (AAA) under its Consumer Arbitration Rules. This includes claims arising before you ordered your System (such as claims related to statements Tesla made about our products). Tesla and/or SCE (as applicable) will pay all AAA fees for any arbitration, which will be held in the city or county of your legal residence. To learn more about the Rules and how to begin an arbitration, you can call any AAA office or go to www.adr.org. The arbitrator can only resolve disputes between you and Tesla and SCE, and cannot consolidate claims from others without consent from you, Tesla, SCE and the others. You can only bring claims in arbitration against Tesla and/or SCE in your individual capacity and not as a plaintiff or class member in any class or representative action (and the same is true for Tesla and SCE). If a court or arbitrator decides that any part of this agreement to arbitrate cannot be enforced as to a specific claim for relief or remedy (such as what lawyers call “injunctive” or “declaratory” relief), then that claim or remedy (and only that claim or remedy) will be carved out of the arbitration and can be filed in court; all other claims must be arbitrated. If you prefer, you can take your individual dispute to a small claims court instead. If you don’t want to agree to arbitration, you can "opt out” of arbitration by sending us a letter within 30 days after placing your initial order for your System. Please send the letter to Tesla, Inc.; P.O. Box 15430; Fremont, CA 94539-7970, and/or Southern California Edison Company Attn: Claims Department, P.O. Box 900, Rosemead, CA 91770, and include your name, your order number, the name of the product you ordered and a statement explaining your desire to opt out of arbitration. If you do not opt out, your agreement to arbitrate overrides any different arbitration agreement between us, including any arbitration agreement in a lease or finance contract.