Tesla connecting a Brazoria County battery storage facility to the Texas power grid

Tesla is working on a battery storage facility in Brazoria County. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Tesla is working on a battery storage facility in Brazoria County. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Tesla is working on a battery storage facility in Brazoria County. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)

Electric carmaker and energy company Tesla is working to connect a battery station under construction in Brazoria County to the Texas power grid.

The power station, known as Gambit Energy Storage Park, is located in Angleton at West Mulberry St. and Murray Ranch Road. The was 7.7-acre lot was purchased by Tesla subsidiary Gambit Energy Storage, LLC in August 2020, according to permits filed with Brazoria County.

The city of Angleton published a project summary for the project on its website in 2019 showing that Gambit Energy Storage Park was originally proposed by Spring, Texas-based Plus Power, LLC, whose leadership team has connections to Tesla. Lithium-ion batteries will be housed in climate-controlled containers and provide backup energy storage to the local electrical grid. According to a report by Bloomberg, the site will store more than 100 megawatts of energy, enough to power around 20,000 homes for a day.

"This location is ideal for energy storage due to the unique electrical infrastructure (i.e. available space) of the Angleton substation,” the project summary reads. “Additionally, Angleton forms an especially volatile 'node' on the ERCOT energy grid, and the greater system will benefit from the energy balancing properties that the battery can provide."

ERCOT, also known as the Energy Reliability Council of Texas, was criticized by Tesla CEO Elon Musk following the widespread power outages during Winter Storm Uri in February. ERCOT’s grid came within five minutes of statewide failure during the crisis.


“Not earning that R,” Musk wrote in a Feb. 17 tweet referencing ERCOT.

A 2019 presentation by Plus Power to Angleton City Council also identified weaknesses in the ERCOT grid, including an “aging generation fleet” and narrow energy reserve margin as potential issues for emergency situations that could be aided by battery storage.

Musk has indicated his intention to grow Tesla’s presence in the energy industry; in a July 2020 quarterly earnings call that Tesla Energy would in the long term be “roughly the same size as Tesla Automotive." Tesla has an existing 100-megawatt battery storage facility in Australia, and also produces the Powerwall, a battery-charging station Tesla owners can purchase for their homes.

“In order to achieve a sustainable energy future, we have to have sustainable energy generation, which I think is going to be primarily solar and followed by wind, [but] those are intermittent,” he said during the call. “You need to have a lot of batteries to store the solar energy, because the wind doesn’t always blow and the sun doesn’t always shine.”

The Gambit Energy project is the latest in a flurry of investments Musk has made in Texas. After announcing the construction of a Tesla gigafactory east of Austin in July 2020, another of his companies, tunnel-building firm The Boring Co., leased property in Travis County. In March, job postings on the aerospace company SpaceX's website also indicated plans to build a manufacturing facility in Austin.
By Olivia Aldridge
Olivia is the reporter for Community Impact's Central Austin edition. A graduate of Presbyterian College in upstate South Carolina, Olivia was a reporter and producer at South Carolina Public Radio before joining Community Impact in Austin.


MOST RECENT

Residents will have until May 2023 to obtain a Real ID. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
US Department of Homeland Security extends Real ID deadline until 2023

Drivers will have until May 2023 to get the Real ID, which will be required for adults boarding a U.S. commercial flight.

Krystal Hawks received the Region IV Elementary School Principal of the Year for Alvin ISD. She is the principal at Shirley Dill Brothers Elementary and an University of Houston-Clear Lake alumna. (Courtesy University of Houston-Clear Lake)
Shirley Dill Brothers principal, UHCL alumna receives principal of the year award

Hawks started as principal at Shirley Dill Brothers Elementary when the school opened in 2017.

Susan Bailey was elected president of the American Medical Association in June 2020. (Courtesy American Medical Association)
'I am convinced we will beat COVID': American Medical Association President Susan Bailey discusses vaccine successes, myths, challenges

Bailey was elected president of the American Medical Association in June 2020. Much of the organization's focus during that time has been on vaccine transparency and distribution.

Clear Creek ISD officials said recounting election votes will be a first for the district. (Courtesy Unsplash)
Clear Creek ISD to recount votes from District 5 race

Unofficial results show incumbent Jay Cunningham won re-election with 1,406 of the votes. His opponents, Christine Parizo and Keith Esthay, earned 841 and 10 votes, respectively.

Pfizer vaccines could become available to kids 12 and up as soon as next week. (Courtesy Adobe Stock/Graphic by Justin Howell/Community Impact Newspaper)
FDA expands Pfizer vaccine authorization to children ages 12 to 15 years old

This is the first time people under the age of 16 have been granted access to a coronavirus vaccine.

The deadline is May 17 for residents to protest their appraised property values set by the Harris County Appraisal District earlier this year, and officials are encouraging protesters to take online options into account. (Courtesy Pexels)
Harris County residents have until May 17 to protest property values

High demand for residential properties along with a shrinking inventory of homes translated into a roughly 8%-10% increase in residential values on average across the county this year

A rendering of the new facility for Christian Helping Hands and SEVA Clinic, located at 4305 Magnolia Parkway, Pearland (Courtesy Christian Helping Hands)
Christian Helping Hands, SEVA Clinic receive permit for new facility

The nonprofits hope to move into the new facility by December.

ExxonMobil moved employees from its Springwoods Village campus to a Hughes Landing to cure a default on a Montgomery County tax abatement. (Courtesy ExxonMobil)
ExxonMobil resolves tax abatement default; Home Depot distribution center taking over superfund site; and more top Houston-area news

Read the most popular business and community news from the past week from the Houston area.

As of the afternoon of May 6, there are 21 total active cases in Friendswood ISD, 13 of them at the same campus. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Friendswood ISD classrooms pivot to virtual learning after COVID-19 outbreak

Two classrooms at Bales Intermediate School will learn remotely for the remainder of the week after more than 10% of the people in those classrooms tested positive for COVID-19. While there is evidence of community spread, the positivity rate for the entire Bales campus is just under 2%.