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Sunrun and GRID Alternatives provide free home batteries to Californians vulnerable to power outages

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Sunrun has partnered with GRID Alternatives, a national non-profit leader in making renewable energy technology and job training accessible to underserved communities, which will provide 100 percent free battery systems to low-income customers in wildfire-prone regions.

Batteries will be financed through the California Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP) Equity Resiliency Budget, enabling Sunrun and GRID Alternatives to provide zero-cost batteries to homeowners receiving them. GRID Alternatives will continue to work with community-based organizations and be responsible for outreach to potential clients.

This opportunity is timely, as the rolling blackouts have brought thousands of Californians into darkness in the midst of a heatwave.

The offer will include a home battery storage system and 10 years of monitoring and maintenance, as well as original warranties from the battery manufacturer. This will be Sunrun’s first offering storage of batteries without solar power.

“I encourage all Californians to take control of their own energy and explore the benefits of a home battery. Storage is critical to energy equity. This program is easy to apply for and free for California’s most vulnerable populations. It helps families keep the lights on and food fresh when the power goes out, no matter their income level, while supporting a cleaner and more reliable electricity system.”

Lynn Jurich, CEO Sunrun.

These communities now need affordable , reliable power more than ever before. According to the California Energy Commission study, low-income households spend three times more of their income on energy costs than their higher earnings.

Many low-income families often can not afford enough electricity to stay warm or cool. Shutoffs can cause even greater problems, such as spoiled medicines and food.

By reaching customers living in the Central Valley-specifically San Joaquin Valley-and in Greater Los Angeles and elsewhere, GRID Alternatives and Sunrun are providing access to Californians who are facing some of the highest energy burdens and who will benefit most from affordable, clean solutions.

“We want to live in a world where families can stay in their homes, free of burdensome energy costs, health and safety risks, and the threat of environmental disasters, through the use of renewable energy technologies like battery storage. That’s why we’re excited to partner with Sunrun to bring no-cost battery storage technology to underserved customers throughout California.”

Erica Mackie, GRID Alternatives CEO and co-founder.

Energy stored where it is used is cleaner and more resilient than fossil-fuel generators. Generating energy at home and in communities means that utility companies do not have to transport as much electricity long distances in dry, wildfire-prone conditions.

Distributed energy systems also make it possible for people to share power locally, making the grid safer, more resilient and more affordable for everyone.

The SGIP Equity Resiliency Budget is financed by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) initiative, which provides rebates for distributed energy resources. This budget is dedicated specifically to Equity and Resiliency customers who qualify on the basis of income or medical needs and who live in a high fire-threatening district or a power shut-off area.

Residents who are both eligible for equity and who live in power-threatening regions can have access to incentives that make them eligible for batteries completely free of charge.

Nedim Husomanovic

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