Tesla Wants to Sell Electricity to Texas After the State’s Power Grid Failures

Tesla has been in the news a lot over the years. However, when the EV automaker announced it would be building a new plant in Texas, the world was more than a little shocked. Texas hasn’t exactly been open about embracing Tesla vehicles, but Elon Musk doesn’t seem to be bothered by this. He decided to take things a step further by selling Texans energy through Tesla Energy Ventures. Given the latest power grid issues which hit Texas earlier this year, it appears he’s got a solid argument.

Texas has its own grid

White Tesla building with Tesla written in grey against a blue sky.
Tesla building | Getty Images

In an effort to retain independence from the federal government, Texas has its own power grid. While it’s commendable to be independent, it can also come with its own problems. The Texas grid is small, meaning that it doesn’t have anyone else to turn to when it fails.

For those on the federal grid, when there is a lack of power in one state, it can borrow from another. Texas doesn’t have that option. Although according to The Texas Tribune, it had imported power from Mexico in 2011. 

However, there have been more recent problems which only prove how serious the situation has become. Just this year, a cold snap left many people without power. In Forney reports, 4.8 million homes were left without power, and 111 people died during the power outage. So what is Texas going to do as winter is quickly approaching? If Elon Musk has his way, Tesla might just come to the rescue.

Can Tesla help Texas?

If there’s one thing Tesla can do right, it’s creating batteries that go above and beyond. Its EVs have a range that leaves the competition far behind, and Tesla wants to branch into selling energy into homes.

The Tesla Energy Ventures could do just that. Now that it’s clear the current Texas power grid provider Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), isn’t able to provide enough power to Texans, there are plenty of companies vying to join in. According to The Texas Monthly, Tesla Energy Ventures is standing out from the crowd.

Tesla has a solid plan to help boost the Texas power grid without involving federal regulation. The Texas Monthly reports, “Tesla could sell kilowatts that are either drawn from the grid when it is working or pull from Tesla-made home batteries when the grid goes down. Importantly, Tesla could also let individual Texans with solar panels earn money by sharing their excess power with the grid. That’s something that, today, only large commercial customers can do easily.”

Tesla is headed for Texas

According to Green Car Reports, the new power grid isn’t the only way Tesla will be involved with Texas. The EV automaker plans to open a new plant near Austin, where it will produce the Cybertruck, Semi, Model 3, and Model Y for the East Coast.

However, this comes as a shock to some as Tesla isn’t allowed to sell its vehicles in Texas. In fact, this may not change until 2023 because of current franchise laws. For this to be changed, it has to go through the Texas legislature. A bill has been introduced to remedy this, but so far, it has been stalled.

It’s unclear how this will turn out, but Tesla is still moving forward with its plans to open a new plant. The fact that it’s helping boost the Texas economy may play a role in what happens in 2023. 

It may also help open doors for Tesla Energy Ventures to boost the power grid. Either way, it appears that Tesla is in Texas to stay. 

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