Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

PG&E Teams Up With Tesla to Build a Giant Battery Storage System for California

By Rich Smith – Jul 29, 2020 at 4:27PM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

America's newest mega-battery warehouse will be 22% bigger than Australia's.

Tesla's (TSLA 0.37%) business of building really big batteries just keeps getting bigger.

Today, the company most famous for building electric cars, but that's also getting increasingly famous for building big batteries (for utility-scale storage of electricity), announced its latest project. In cooperation with California electric utility Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PCG 2.46%), Tesla will build a 182.5 megawatt (MW) lithium-ion battery energy storage system at the PG&E substation in Moss Landing, Monterey County, Calif.  

Tesla Big Battery electricity warehouse in a field in foreground and windmills in the background

Tesla's battery warehouse project in Australia, smaller than the one being built for PG&E. Image source: Tesla.

182.5 megawatts refers to the maximum amount of energy output that the battery energy storage system's (BESS) 256 Tesla "Megapack" battery units can release onto the grid at times when extra power is needed (for example, to forestall a brownout or blackout when power consumption is high). The total actual storage capacity of the "BESS" is stated as 730 megawatt hours (MWh).

Thus, once complete, the BESS will gradually store up the 730 MWh of power and, when needed, be able to release 182.5 MW per hour, sustaining the grid with its saved-up juice for four full hours.

The companies say the Moss Landing BESS will be "one of the largest utility-owned, lithium-ion battery energy storage systems in the world." To put it in context, it will be about 22% bigger than the already-expanded battery warehouse that Tesla built in Australia two years ago -- a big leap forward for renewable energy.

Tesla and PG&E will cooperate on the design, construction, and maintenance of the BESS, but it will be owned and operated by PG&E once finished. The companies broke ground on the project on July 21, and expect to have it up and charged to capacity by early 2021, and "fully operational" by the second quarter of 2021.

Rich Smith has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Tesla. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

Tesla, Inc. Stock Quote
Tesla, Inc.
TSLA
$283.98 (0.37%) $1.04
PG&E Corporation Stock Quote
PG&E Corporation
PCG
$12.71 (2.46%) $0.30

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
327%
 
S&P 500 Returns
105%

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 09/28/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.