What is a Virtual Power Plant?
Virtual Power Plants (VPPs), also referred to as battery aggregation or energy sharing, connects batteries in an energy sharing network. They are a way for households to derive more benefits from their solar panel PV and battery systems and drive down their energy costs even further.
How does a Virtual Power Plant work?
Many households have installed solar and batteries and enjoy the benefits of using renewable energy to power their homes and drive down their energy costs.
VPPs are an important step in the renewable energy transition and offer households another way to reduce energy costs through using their solar and battery system. A VPP is where a collection of solar batteries operate as a network for energy generation which helps manage energy flow and reduce reliance on the grid in times of higher demand. Being part of a VPP can reduce your energy bills, provide support to the grid, and to your community.
The following video explains a bit more about how VPPs work.
What does energy sharing mean for my household?
Sharing energy has benefits for individuals, communities, and the environment. To take part in a VPP program, you need to have solar panels and a solar battery installed. The Virtual Power Plant pilot program by Solar Victoria offered solar battery rebates to help Victorians join approved VPP programs.
Each of the Solar Victoria approved VPP programs offered different incentives – like discounts on hardware, reduced energy bills or regular compensation for taking part. Some were available state-wide, while others were tailored to specific geographic areas.
Each program worked differently, however by taking part in an approved VPP program, households get compensation for sharing their excess energy and access to better energy deals.
Once established, sharing energy with the VPP network is automatic, however, participants can track their energy use and export through apps, devices or web-based portals, depending on the program they have joined.
Reviewed 30 June 2023