If you weren’t already convinced that Tesla is an energy guru, you will be now: The company is making strides to power the island of Ta’u in American Samoa with solar energy. Yes, the entire island.
For a cool $2.6 billion, the company acquired SolarCity and then announced its new major project to install a microgrid of 5,328 solar energy panels and 60 batteries that will supply nearly 100 percent of power for the 600 residents living on the island.
The impact the project will have on the island is huge – schools and fire and police stations, for example, will be able to remain powered without constantly fearing an outage or having to ration energy. Even without sunlight, the microgrid will enable the island to stay fully powered for three days! And it can fully recharge in just seven hours.
“It’s always sunny out here, and harvesting that energy from the sun will make me sleep a lot more comfortably at night, just knowing I’ll be able to serve my customers,” said local resident Keith Ahsoon, whose family owns a food store there.
Equally incredible is that the groundbreaking project will prevent the island from using 109,500 gallons of diesel every year!
“This is part of making history,” said Ahsoon. “This project will help lessen the carbon footprint of the world.”