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Old 19-09-2016, 19:28   #31
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

(Intently watching this thread with a 4kw grid tie and 24V 700 aH LiFePo4 bank with 4kw Magnum sinewave inverter in the PNW)...

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Old 19-09-2016, 19:52   #32
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Originally Posted by SV DestinyAscen View Post
No. That's patently false - individuals who have been prosecuted for "merely storing rainwater" were building surface dams without permits. Not talking about barrels or even tanks of water - but crude earthen dams that present actual danger to others, nuisance to neighbors and threat to public health and safety.
Yes and no. In Colorado, the county I work in and lived in for 25 years, rain water and even sprinkler run off were considered to be protected public resources. Just collecting rain water in a barrel was punishable by fine and jail time. Only just this past summer was this law repealed. But I do recall one drought year where my coworker was fined for watering her garden with her own bath water. Truly nuts!
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Old 19-09-2016, 19:52   #33
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Ha anyone been following the progress of L.A.'s conversion to renewable energy?
I saw a Prius on the 405 today.
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Old 19-09-2016, 23:48   #34
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

It seems most everyone is generally agreeing. Starting out with what might initially seem the most objectionable idea, taxes (in general) are a Very Good Thing indeed (well, if one thinks modern civilizations, say like those of the last 10,000 years or so, are a good thing [which personally I don't, but that's another story]). Think interstates, health services (in some countries), education, those kind of things.

The problem, as described and alluded to in the posts above, is not with 'taxes' but with their equitable distribution. It is a difficult problem and one that is likely impossible to be solved even close to perfectly even with the best government, but in the US, with its' polarized, un- and mis-informed and apathetic public, coupled to a (the proper adjective escapes me at the moment) kleptocratic bunch of politicians allegedly 'running' things in Washington (and their states' respective capitals), a proper, balanced solution seems highly unlikely; given the pro corpro-capitalistic illusions of most of the 'ruling members' of the US aberration (hard to call it a 'society' at this stage of the game), I'd say the best solution is, in the US, impossible at the moment.

Which is unfortunate, because solar, though beset with rather large efficiency, manufacturing, distribution and storage problems, may be one of the more viable technologies to help get the planet 'over the hump' in the next 100 years or so...
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Old 20-09-2016, 01:17   #35
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Here's the problem. The hotel and the homes in Nevada are not going to be independent of the power company's grid. They can't be. They still need electricity at night, when the sun isn't shining. So what they want to do is sell more electricity during the day than they are using, and then get back the excess at night. They want to use the electric grid like a big battery. But the grid is NOT a battery! It does not store electricity, it only moves it around--mainly from the generation plants to the consumers. At night, the homes and hotels are depending on the electric company's power generators to supply them with electricity.

If the homes and hotels were actually willing to completely disconnect from the grid then they wouldn't have to pay anything. They don't want to completely disconnect, though. So the electric company says they have to pay SOMETHING, for the privilege of storing their electricity and getting it back during the night.

Seems perfectly reasonable to me.

Of course, exactly what they should pay is debatable. And that debate will be dominated by politics, and the money that drives it, just like any public policy debate in this country. Which means that whoever offers the politicians the most will probably win. Power companies have a lot of money and a lot of political influence, but then the gigantic casino/hotels in Las Vegas aren't exactly bereft of money and influence either.

We'll see how it turns out.
Its more complicated than that. The cost of producing electricity varies dramatically by time of day. Daytime on-peak costs average 3 to 10 times higher than night off-peak, and sometimes the off-peak price actually goes negative. Net metering customers provide their energy to the grid when it is worth the most, and get it back when it is worth the least.
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Old 20-09-2016, 06:39   #36
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Its more complicated than that. The cost of producing electricity varies dramatically by time of day. Daytime on-peak costs average 3 to 10 times higher than night off-peak, and sometimes the off-peak price actually goes negative. Net metering customers provide their energy to the grid when it is worth the most, and get it back when it is worth the least.
This is true-ish it used to be absolutely true, which is why a lot of factories were prohibited from starting large machinery between 10am-2pm. But as more and more solar has hit some grids it's becoming less true. We haven't seen it yet in the US, I don't think, but in some parts of Germany solar has turned prices negative during the day. But I don't think this is really the issue for electric companies...

Sadly the utilities were granted licenses to make a profit, with guaranteed returns on Capitol investments. Starting with more efficient appliances, and adding better insulation, LED lights, etc has actually resulted in a drop in US demand. Combine this with a drop in usage from distributed production (like solar) and utility production is seeing the fist change in its market ever.

It's becoming harder and harder to justify building anther billion dollar coal production plant when your demands are going down. So how are the investors supposed to increase their profits? Because if you think public utilities are just providing a service you are nuts. They are traditionally very safe long term investments with fixed costs and guaranteed profits.
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Old 20-09-2016, 16:44   #37
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

This is going to be a big deal in the "Sunshine State" come November.

Solar amendments: 'Yes' in August, 'No' in November - Sun Sentinel

Are Big Power Companies Pulling a Fast One on Florida Voters? | Mother Jones

"If passed by the voters, the utility-sponsored amendment would be a constitutional endorsement of the idea that rooftop solar users should pay higher utility bills than other customers. Solar users could end up paying twice as much as other customers pay to buy power from the utilities. This utility-sponsored amendment pretends to be pro-solar but is actually a disguised attempt to derail rooftop solar in Florida."
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Old 20-09-2016, 17:24   #38
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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A precedent has been set in the US where a private power utility company sued a hotel chain for lost profits...

Does this reek of Fascism?
Ah, no. First, not even close to fascism. Also, the article is just wrong. MGM is paying NV Energy to leave as a customer -- NV Energy is a statutory monopoly -- and purchase their energy on the open market. There would be no fee if they were switching to their own solar-only power system.
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Old 20-09-2016, 20:18   #39
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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MGM is paying NV Energy to leave as a customer
= Problem #1

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NV Energy is a statutory monopoly
= Problem #2
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Old 20-09-2016, 20:48   #40
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Originally Posted by SV DestinyAscen View Post
No. That's patently false - individuals who have been prosecuted for "merely storing rainwater" were building surface dams without permits. Not talking about barrels or even tanks of water - but crude earthen dams that present actual danger to others, nuisance to neighbors and threat to public health and safety.
As of 2015 in Colorado it was technically illegal to collect the runoff from your roof, though I understand it was rarely enforced. Efforts then were made to make an exception for 2-55gal drums collecting roof runoff by individual homeowner but it didn't pass the legislature before they adjourned for the year..

No idea about what's happened this year.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs...-on-your-home/

Most other states are not that restrictive.
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Old 20-09-2016, 21:10   #41
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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I think that's the idea - a lot of state reps get a LOT of money from oil compaines.
It's not the oil companies pushing this. Have a look at Buffet (not Jimmy) who controls NV Energy in Nevada. Also he is the one who killed the keystone pipeline because of the impact it would have on his railways.

Another reason to go full time sailing. And if they try to put taxes on solar at point of sale then just buy in a non taxing country and have them shipped to another non taxing country where you have your boat, for the installation.

All this taxing thievery will do is destroy the solar industry state by state in the USA. It will cause weird market place distortions with perverse outcomes. A true free market with minimum government taxation is the real solution. Let old energy investors suffer rather than use the power of government to protect their monopolistic ventures.

Power and water are two utilities that I think should be state owned. Management should be the best and anti fraud oversight should be diligent.

But that is another discussion of great complexity.
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Old 20-09-2016, 21:35   #42
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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No it isn't really, not if you get government subsidies and tax breaks for installing Solar and you have a ready market for it, that is if the Government requires the Electric company to buy it from you.
IF the above is true, then I have to think that the general public is subsidizing Solar users
Stop all subsidies. Stop selling power back to the power monopoly. Buy litho and store your own power to your hearts content.
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Old 21-09-2016, 07:51   #43
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Stop all subsidies. Stop selling power back to the power monopoly. Buy litho and store your own power to your hearts content.
Technically possible but grotesquely expensive. It would be cheaper to keep buying power from the electric company even in states with very high energy bills (like Hawaii).

There needs to be some cost to owners of solar in order to cover the cost of the grid. But how to set that reasonably is the issue. The power companies want to charge so much that rooftop solar is economically impossible, home owners want to pay nothing. Somewhere in there is a reasonable cost.
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Old 21-09-2016, 07:58   #44
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Technically possible but grotesquely expensive. It would be cheaper to keep buying power from the electric company even in states with very high energy bills (like Hawaii).

That sums up Solar, where grid power is available. It's just simply cheaper to buy power from the utility.
What changes that though is subsidies, tax breaks etc. While well meaning, they are sometimes mis-used and abused.

Put Government it charge of the utilities? I hope not.

I plan on leaving anyway, it will be my kids problem, I hope they fix it.
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Old 21-09-2016, 08:36   #45
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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That sums up Solar, where grid power is available. It's just simply cheaper to buy power from the utility.
What changes that though is subsidies, tax breaks etc. While well meaning, they are sometimes mis-used and abused.

Put Government it charge of the utilities? I hope not.

I plan on leaving anyway, it will be my kids problem, I hope they fix it.
Not totally true. Take California as an example where electricity prices rose to exorbitant levels.

Example (that I witnessed):
Annual costs for electric pre solar - ~$4250.00 (@ $.35kwh)
Solar system cost installed (10,500w) - ~$26,000.00 (before 30% from Fed.)
Annual electric costs after net metering - <$200 including $13/month facility charge
With a 20 year life span, solar & net metering pays off. Add batteries, probably not so much.

Can't cost justify in Florida where top rate for electric is ~$.12kwh (in my area).

I have no problem with a facility charge for net metering, but that charge should be equitable, the fear is it won't be in the future.
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