Voltus Helps Prevent Blackouts During California’s Heat Wave

(Voltus, 13.Sep.2022) — Voltus, Inc., a distributed energy resource (DER) software platform, today announced its efforts to support the California Independent System Operator (“CAISO”) during the record-breaking September heat wave. Across more than 80 discrete events between 31 August and 9 September, Voltus dispatched its entire portfolio, comprising nearly 430 sites and 73 MW.

“First and foremost, we need to thank our customers for delivering on their commitments, helping to prevent a calamity in California,” says Stephanie Hendricks, SVP of Operations at Voltus. “In August of 2020, we saw power grid failures and rolling blackouts that resulted in irreparable damage – lives were lost and businesses and communities were impacted. This is why we made a tremendous effort to increase our program offerings, enroll more customers to participate, and provide our customers with technology they need in order to maximize their financial opportunity and contribution to the grid.”

Throughout the extreme weather event, CAISO and major utilities including Pacific Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison, and San Diego Gas & Electric, issued Emergency Energy Alerts, conservation calls, and warnings for potential rotating power outages. On September 6, CAISO said: “California ISO power grid peak demand hit 52,061 MW, a new all-time record. Still holding in EEA3 – no load shed. Conservation is making a difference.”

“Without demand response, California would very likely have experienced rolling blackouts on multiple days last week,” says Gregg Dixon, CEO of Voltus. “Yet demand response comprises only about 1.5 GW of the CAISO 52 GW peak. California’s grid is particularly susceptible to climate change and drought. As such, we need to unleash the full power of distributed energy resources – which can contribute an additional 20 GW to California – in order to provide the affordable and reliable electric grid befitting the world’s 5th largest economy.”

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