Apple continues to become more ubiquitous. The tech giant, which sells everything from smartphones to computers and all forms of media and more may soon enter people’s lives in the US in a much less public way but more widespread way—by selling its excess renewable energy. Perhaps they’ll call it iPower!
Earlier this year the company filed with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to allow it to sell excess energy produced by its renewable energy plants at its data centers and other installations to the grid through its subsidiary Apple Energy LLC. Last week the FERC approved the company’s plans.
In the approval FERC’s Steve Rodgers, director of the Division of Electric Power Regulation—West wrote: “Apple Energy’s horizontal market power screens have been reviewed, and Apple Energy passes both the pivotal supplier and wholesale market share screens in those markets.” Those markets cover most of the US. He added: “Apple Energy’s submittal satisfies the Commission’s requirements for market-based rate authority regarding horizontal market power.”
The company already has contracts for 218 megawatts of energy from various sources, including solar, wind and waste-gas power. West offered some more insight: “Apple Energy owns 19.9 megawatts of generation capacity in the Nevada Power Company balancing authority area, and owns and operates 50 megawatts of generation capacity in the Salt River Project balancing authority area, and 130 megawatts of generation capacity in the CAISO market.”
Under the approval, reported Utility Dive, “Apple would be able to trade electricity in wholesale power markets, giving it the ability to move power around contractually to offset locational gaps in solar output. Apple would also be able to sell to end users at retail rates, which could be an effective hedge against changes in net metering policies that could alter the existing economics of Apple solar resources.”
Other tech companies are also increasing the amount of renewable energy they use and finding interesting ways to use their excess energy. For instance, Alphabet created Google Energy in 2009, which Utility Dive said manages that company’s electric generation, which comes from renewable resources.Tweet