At the end of last month, Tesla unveiled their new product line, Tesla Energy, a series of batteries which may revolutionize the way people use electricity in their homes.
“Our goal is to fundamentally change the way the world uses energy,” said Elon Musk, CEO and product architect of Tesla Motors, “which sounds crazy.”
While it might seem crazy, what would be truly crazy would be not investing in new clean energy technology. The batteries currently being marketed for home use are three ft across, four ft tall, and six inches deep, and come in 7kWh or 10kWh versions.
The Powerwall allows for storage of electricity in the home. It can be hooked up to solar panels to store solar generated electricity, it can store cheap electricity bought during off-peak hours and then used during on-peak hours, and it can be used as a backup power source during power outages (think of an emergency generator but instead of creating new electricity, your home just soaks up the sweet energy bucket that is the Powerwall).
The big innovation of this product is that it is a battery that can store enough energy to get people disconnected from utility companies (off the grid). But what does this have to do with cannabis cultivation?
Well as growers know, the cannabis plant can take up a lot of electricity. IndefinitelyWild interviewed a grower with a modest operation and eight to ten grow lights running 16 to 20 hours a day in his garage. His costs come up to about $2100, including his personal home use and air conditioning during the hotter parts of the year. Needless to say, growing cannabis isn’t cheap, even for small grow operations.
Still, the money saved by the Powerwall for smaller grow-ops wouldn’t be substantial, although it could save them profits by preventing buds from ending their vegetation state prematurely during power outages. The Powerwall might be a bit more practical for larger grow-ops.
Experts at IndefinitelyWild estimate that a larger grow-op running 50 lights and using air conditioning during the day could save a total of $13,500 dollars a year if they used two 10kWh Powerwalls to save energy by relying on their stored energy during on-peak periods.
Now currently, solar panels might be too expensive for small indoor grow-ops. But this technology has the potential to be really neat in the future, as solar energy technology continues to improve and (hopefully) becomes cheaper. Just think about it: you have your home hooked up to the Powerwall, which is hooked up to your solar panels, which produce the energy for your grow lights, which would mean something really awesome : your cannabis would be grown using entirely self sustaining sun energy. You know, the way nature does it.
Although we are not quite there yet, it is fun to speculate how this new technology might come to change the way cannabis cultivators do their business. So to answer the question, “Can the Tesla Powerwall help grow operations save money?” Yes, and it can only get better as technology improves.