Elon Musk’s companies could solve South Australia’s growing energy problem in no more than 100 days, Tesla co-founder and energy division head Lyndon Rive boldly claimed in a recent interview with Australia’s Financial Review,
It’s a challenging proposal no doubt — but Musk himself upped the ante. Not only did he back Rive’s claim but he insisted that if the energy issue wasn’t solved within the 100-day window, he would offer the service completely free of charge. Who wouldn’t accept an offer like that?
A dramatic rise in prices coupled with a higher frequency of blackouts recently pushed South Australia to the brink of an all-out predicament. Furthermore, the political climate in the state hasn’t lent itself to solving the problem; two separate coal plants closed down recently, which in turn raised wholesale prices to $14,000 per MWh. Enter Musk and his energy-focused companies that have decided to help the region with its energy woes.
Musk offers an extensive energy storage facility, not unlike what Tesla just finished building in California. For what it’s worth, Tesla took 90 days to get that plant up and running. After the Financial Review report, Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes asked Musk directly if the claim was genuine.
@mcannonbrookes Tesla will get the system installed and working 100 days from contract signature or it is free. That serious enough for you?
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 10, 2017
If Musk is able to deliver on his promise, he said he plans to offer the energy system to south Australia at a cost of $250 per kWh of storage which would make the entire system cost roughly $250 million — a bargain for a system on this scale. Cannon-Brookes later tweeted that he is working on raising money and accruing political consent to get a green light (and some help) for the system.
As of now, it’s unknown when Musk and Tesla plan on moving forward with the ambitious project, though like many of the things Musk puts his mind too, there is almost a certainty it is completed sooner rather than later.
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