Sonnen, a global manufacturer of smart residential energy storage solutions, has announced the launch of its sonnenCommunity New York Virtual Power Plant (VPP)—a new solar plus battery program for homeowners in New York state.
As part of the program sonnen will be the exclusive hardware and software provider and it will offer locally generated clean energy at a discounted rate to 200 homes in Westchester County, N.Y. in an initial pilot phase.
Sustainable Westchester, a non-profit administering the Westchester Power Program, and the largest community choice aggregator (CCA) in New York, will act as a premier partner for this project, working with sonnen and local solar contractors to build a dispatchable grid asset, which will provide homeowners with backup power, carbon-neutral living, and it will generate revenue for participating in the New York energy market.
“We understand that stand-alone residential solar is not sufficient – a distributed, modernized grid requires controllable, intelligent batteries paired with solar. What’s more, VPPs are invaluable resources that can replace the dirtiest “peaker” power plants with local renewable energy,” states Michel Delafontaine, director of business development at Sustainable Westchester.
“Fostering community engagement and inspiring environmental leadership are key tenets of our business model. With our involvement in the sonnenCommunity NY VPP, we’re able to deploy our knowledge of regional markets and municipal programs as well as our connections with local leadership to implement an innovative solution from sonnen that provides a clean, reliable energy future for our residents and community infrastructure.”
sonnenCommunity offers Local New Yorkers Clean Energy
According to sonnen, the program offers residents the opportunity to establish a cleaner energy future for themselves and their neighbors by joining a broader effort to build clean energy infrastructure in New York. The network of residential solar plus sonnen batteries will deliver a number of benefits by balancing the local electric grid, reducing outages and brownouts and lowering CO2 emissions through decreased reliance on peaker plants.
Quest Solar and SunBlue Energy, two regional contractors and installation partners, will take the lead in implementing the sonnenCommunity program locally. Sonnen notes these companies will pursue new and retrofit sales of rooftop solar and sonnen ecoLinx systems among eligible homeowners throughout Westchester County.
sonnen explains that its VPP software platform, Logical Buildings, a third-party scheduling coordinator and aggregator, can dispatch the planned 80MWh of ecoLinx batteries in the sonnenCommunity N.Y. VPP for dynamic participation and revenue generation in the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) market. The company stresses that by forming a dynamic grid asset, batteries enrolled in the program can also provide demand response services to the local utility, ConEdison, including solar time shifting, reduced demand for peaking resources, grid decongestion during peak periods, and lower carbon emissions.
Based on the outcomes of the initial pilot with the sonnenCommunity Sustainable Westchester program, sonnen expects to expand the project footprint into several Long Island communities, through a partnership with similar programs under development. The ultimate goal is to bring 5,000 new solar-plus storage units per quarter online in the sonnenCommunity NY VPP by 2024.
“The launch of the sonnenCommunity NY VPP represents another milestone for sonnen and a turning point for clean energy and grid-integration in New York State. With the help and dedication of local partners like Sustainable Westchester, Quest Solar and SunBlue Energy, the sonnen team is thrilled to offer New York homeowners safe, long-lasting clean energy our systems provide through this innovative new program,” adds Blake Richetta, chairman and CEO of sonnen.
“By joining this program, homeowners are not just making an investment in their own home’s resilience and sustainability in the face of extreme weather and outages, they are contributing to a greener, more sustainable future for their local power grid.”