Support for LAist comes from
True LA stories, powered by you
Stay Connected

Share This


SoCal Edison Wants To Harness Home Solar For A Virtual Power Plant

Workers install solar panels on a house. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Our reporting is free for everyone, but it’s not free to make.
LAist only exists with reader support. If you're in a position to give, your donation powers our reporters and keeps us independent.

On the hottest Southern California days, when we’re cranking up the A/C, we’re also stressing the power grid. Southern California Edison meets that extra demand by firing up gas-fueled power plants, which are costly to run and burn polluting fossil fuel.

Now Edison and the solar panel company Sunrun are teaming up on a cleaner alternative.

The goal is for batteries from thousands of home solar energy systems to be chained together and their power used to top off energy supplies when needed — essentially creating a virtual power plant.

The pilot project starts with 300 homes in Edison’s multi-county service territory. Each owner would receive a $250 incentive to contribute their excess power to the grid when it’s needed most.

Support for LAist comes from

If the system works, it could expand and ultimately replace those dirty gas-fired power plants.

Our news is free on LAist. To make sure you get our coverage: Sign up for our daily newsletters. To support our non-profit public service journalism: Donate Now.