After taking a brief break from Twitter, Tesla CEO Elon Musk is back with a bang, raising the astonishing issue that bankrupt PG&E could result in rolling blackouts for the next decade.
On the face of it, this appears to be a problem for Elon Musk and electric car-loving Californians, but the intent of this tweet is to pump Tesla’s new Powerwall offering. This solar-charged battery pack is a vital part of the completely sustainable solar-based system that Musk is seeking to create for his consumers. Powerwall utilizes Tesla solar panels to charge a lithium battery. The fact that the battery can store energy at night is what sets Musk’s offering apart from its competitors and is intended to solve one of the main issues with using solar energy in day to day life.
In tweeting about PG&E, the SpaceX CEO is capitalizing on an evident problem with an aging U.S. power grid. Fire danger and archaic infrastructure have resulted in billions of dollars of liability for the once-mighty power company. Tesla finally has the perfect opportunity to shill the benefits that solar power can bring. Elon Musk is essentially saying “no more relying on the state for your home electricity needs” and combining it with the fact that your Powerwall can charge your Model S, 3 or X as well.
The recent blackouts in California caused some issues for Tesla owners that many had not considered. It is impossible to charge your EV in an outage if the superchargers are not working. Hence the need for Powerwall, but Musk is sailing dangerously close to the wind with this tweet. The cost of owning a Model 3 has been rising rapidly. It’s just increased further if Californians will also need to invest in solar panels and a battery pack to ensure they can use their car 365 days a year.
Despite Musk’s fear-mongering about those still stuck on the grid, obtaining a Powerwall has been riddled with delays. Backorders have piled up, making getting the Tesla powering battery difficult – even for those who can stomach the monster price tag. Paul from the popular “Paul’s Hardware” YouTube channel estimates it will take him roughly 11 years to pay off his $32,000 solar panels and battery pack after suffering through lengthy installation delays, though he can benefit from tax credits.
Elon Musk might claim that Tesla doesn’t advertise, but the reality is that his Twitter account has increasingly become an advertising platform. It’s sprinkled with memes but primarily a shop window as this latest tweet about PG&E proves.
This article was edited by Gerelyn Terzo.