GOLETA — The Goleta Water District on Tuesday will discuss a resolution to enroll the district in an initiative program and to execute agreements with Tesla, Inc., for battery systems at the Corona Del Mar Water Treatment Plant and Ellwood Reservoir.
Under the proposed agreement, Tesla would design, furnish, install, operate and maintain the battery systems through the California Public Utilities Commission Self-Generation Incentive Program.
“The District is eligible for the highest level of incentives based on meeting the two criteria of having critical infrastructure subject to public safety power shutoffs (PSPS) events associated with wildfires and of serving customers in disadvantaged or low-income communities,” the staff report reads. “Based on program qualifications and peak energy demands, Tesla identified the District’s CDMWTP and Ellwood Reservoir sites for which the incentives would cover nearly all the costs.”
For the proposal, Tesla would enroll the district in the SGIP and maintain the facilities for a 10-year period, and would be reimbursed for their costs by receiving the SGIP incentive payments. The district’s cost would be limited to electrical engineering review of designs to ensure compatibility with district infrastructure and operations, construction inspection and project management. These costs are estimated to be between $10,000 and $20,000. All other costs will be handled by Tesla.
The two battery systems, estimated to be currently worth approximately $1 million, will be owned by the district and provide emergency backup power during electrical outages and PSPS events, including approximately seven hours for Ellwood Reservoir and 8.3 hours for CDMWTP.
“Once operational, District electricity bills are anticipated to be reduced 15% at these facilities as the battery systems will provide power to the facilities during peak hours when commercial electricity rates are highest. The battery systems would then recharge during off-peak hours when commercial rates are lowest,” the staff report reads. “By moving forward with these projects, the District enhances its emergency preparedness, reduces its dependence on the electrical grid, saves money, and meets several Board-adopted sustainability goals outlined in the Sustainability Plan.”
Feasibility studies for each site could be completed in mid-April. If approved, the district will work with Tesla over the next several months to complete the application process. The California Public Utilities Commission will review and consider the district’s application, and if approved the incentive reserves would be available for up to 18 months.
Tuesday’s meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. To register to join the meeting electronically, visit https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_V8qr24RFQ_C0dXnIPLqabA. The meeting can also be heard by phone by calling 888-788-0099 and entering the webinar ID: 994 2793 2919. For more information, visit www.goletawater.com.
— Mitchell White