RMI’s virtual power plant partnership expands


CPower Energy has joined the Virtual Power Plant Partnership (VP3) that was founded in January of this year by RMI. VP3 aims to move the industry and transform policy toward increased support for scaling energy assets such as electric vehicles (EVs), smart thermostats, appliances, batteries, solar arrays, and others to support the grid.

“Virtual power plants can provide essential grid services by reducing peak power demand and improving resilience in a world of increasingly extreme climate events,” said Mark Dyson, managing director of RMI’s Carbon-Free Electricity Program. “VP3 is excited to partner with CPower and other industry leaders to grow the market for VPPs and ensure the energy transition doesn’t miss a beat.”

CPower, based in Baltimore, Maryland, is owned by LS Power, a development, investment, and operating company focused on the power and energy infrastructure sector.  CPower’s EnerWise Site Optimization solution is a virtual energy manager designed to address the challenges around optimization of distributed energy resources (DER).

The company has 6.3 GW of DER capacity at more than 17,000 sites across the U.S and was recently recognized by Wood Mackenzie as the national leader for flexible capacity in its recent Virtual Power Plant (VPP) Market report. By joining VP3, CPower expects to offer perspective on how to expand VPP access for larger C&I energy users, as well as DER owners and operators.

The VP3 initiative follows in the path of successful institutional spinoffs in the electric sector space previously incubated by RMI including the Clean Energy Buyers Association and the Energy Web Foundation.

Initial funding of the VP3 effort was made possible by General Motors and Google Nest. Founding members include Ford, General Motors, Google Nest, OhmConnect, Olivine, SPAN, SunPower, Sunrun, SwitchDin, and Virtual Peaker.

VP3 is working toward a future where businesses, households, and communities are empowered through VPPs that can help to support cost-effective energy, emissions reductions, and a more resilient electricity grid. To achieve this, VP3 will work to:

  1.       Catalog, research, and communicate VPP benefits
  2.       Develop industry-wide best practices, standards, and roadmaps
  3.       Inform and shape policy development

“We are proud to join our industry colleagues as a member of RMI’s VP3 Initiative and lend CPower’s experience in managing the most flexible capacity of any VPP provider in the U.S.,” said John Horton, president and CEO of CPower.

Read about the benefits of virtual power plants here.

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