“Facility managers are at a premium these days and are overtaxed,” said Julien Gervreau, director of Sustainability at Jackson Family Wines (JFW) during a Thursday breakout session at SB'16 San Diego.
That’s why the winery is benefiting from Tesla Energy’s stationary energy storage systems, which currently stores 4.2 MW of electricity. Partnering with Tesla has been helpful because the energy innovator understands how the winery is trying to be disruptive, Gervreau said.
Tesla’s stationary energy storage system is designed to be simple to use, and can be run manually or automatically.
“Energy managers don’t have to take a hands-on approach if they don’t want to,” Millan said.
Meanwhile, JFW is generating enough solar energy from 6.7 MW of solar across 9 wineries in California — the largest solar portfolio of any wine company in the US.
The winery’s partnership with Tesla also helps it with its participation in PG&E’s demand response program. During times of peak energy usage, the utility pays JFW to cease operations.
Currently, the winery charges the batteries off the grid at night when rates are cheap, but eventually it plans to run its entire operation off of solar, supported by energy storage.
“The game has changed around us with batteries and solar,” Gervreau said.
There is a strong business case for adopting solar, as there is a quick 5-year payback period that essentially creates a net zero energy bill for 30 or more years.
“The business case for energy is easier to measure, but water is harder to measure,” Gervreau said.
Jackson Family Wines recently hired an EDF Climate Corps fellow to help take its largest winery completely off the grid. Stay tuned to see how it turns out.