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Old 22-09-2016, 14:05   #91
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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ICalifornia is allowing PG&E to charge residential consumers ~$13/month. IMO, there is room for that to increase and still be of value to the consumer. How much? $20/month? $30/month? I'm not sure where the top end of that should be.
Gee with the PGE E-1 tiers at $0.18, $0.24 and $0.3998 (gee lets call it 40 cents a kw) the fine folks in California are paying through the nose for electric power. For first tier is set so low that everyone hits the second tier after about 8 days into a month. And new time of day charges will be coming soon too. JOY.

The big thing now is county wide "Green" power where each county's population gets opped in to the county Green power that costs just about the same or a tad more then PGE. You have to opp out by calling them within 60 days to stay with PGE.

Just saw where they were bragging that they had a 48% reduction in emissions for the county. Problem is all that green power goes into the common grid and mixed in with gas and coal power so everyone benifits from those paying for green power. But boy does it look good on paper. The county government get about 1% of the cost, which is sort of another tax.

I myself am quite happy to have lived in California for 9 years now, without a utility bill.
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Old 22-09-2016, 14:09   #92
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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I believe in the State of Florida it is illegal to live in a house and not be connected to the Grid, now I'm not sure of that
That was in Cape Coral where a lady had gone off the grid. She was using rain water for drinking and flushing and has a couple PV's for power. The Judge said she had to be connected to city water and sewer. It was implied that power was required (which is a HUD requirement.) It's the goverment, they are here to protect us.
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Old 22-09-2016, 14:36   #93
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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... If you have a water well but a PUD water line runs in front of your house, would you be taxed for the water from your well?
Often what happens is that you have a well with no water service but then the county/city runs a water supply down the road. In NC, the home owner is given a choice to hook up to the water supply now at a cheap rate, or even free. If the home owner declines and then decides to hook up to the water line later, they are charged a much higher price.

When we lived in the city, it was all but impossible to get a permit for a well.

There have been proposals to tax well water usage.

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Old 22-09-2016, 14:39   #94
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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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.
This is exactly the situation in Ontario now. The Government of Ontario is signing contracts with gas fired generators at a rate of .35kwh for power during the night when all the solar systems are shut down. During the day we sell our power to the US for negative prices because there is too much on the grid and we need to get rid of it. All this due to solar and the fact that we have shut down all the coal fired plants in the province for the sake of the Greens even after spending hundreds of millions of dollars to install scrubbers and other clean technology in the plants because it was politically correct.

I in fact have a 10 kva system at our house that is grid tied. In Ontario a net metering system cannot be charged for time of day use and is charged out on monthly consumption. .08$ for first 800kwh and .11$ above that. On top of that they charge .11$ kwh for delivery.

When I produce more power than I consume they rebate me the same rates for the power but they only rebate half of the delivery charge. They also do not allow credits to be used to pay taxes or the monthly meter charge. If after 10 months I still have credits (unlikely due to low production in winter) they wipe out all remaining credits and start counting over again.

Ontarians pay the highest price for electricity in NA with the exception of California mostly due to the high prices paid to gas generators during the night as well as the cost of subsidising solar. We have created a mess.

Things will only get worse as new technology in Solar will within 10 years result in solar capacity doubling with the same size (sq foot) of panels as people upgrade their solar arrays. The limit in Ontario is 10kva for both net metering and microfit programs and the current rate for new installations for roof top systems is 0.35$ per kwh. Almost double what consumers currently pay.

We plan to get off the grid completely as soon as the battery technology is available to support our consumption rates. We will also need a 20kva solar system to accomplish this.
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Old 22-09-2016, 14:44   #95
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Gee with the PGE E-1 tiers at $0.18, $0.24 and $0.3998 (gee lets call it 40 cents a kw) the fine folks in California are paying through the nose for electric power. For first tier is set so low that everyone hits the second tier after about 8 days into a month. And new time of day charges will be coming soon too.
I am in Texas, where electricity is largely deregulated (transmission and distribution is still a regulated monopoly). I pay about $0.07/kwh delivered, 24/7.
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Old 22-09-2016, 14:51   #96
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

.11 per kWh where I live for residential, industrial is only .05 per kWh?


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Old 22-09-2016, 15:13   #97
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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.11 per kWh where I live for residential, industrial is only .05 per kWh?


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Industrial almost certainly pays a demand charge that at least doubles their electricity costs. Industrials almost always pay for demand (kW) reduction strategies before they invest in energy (kWh) reduction strategies.

On the other hand, utilities offer rate structures to encourage shifting demand from peak times to times that their generating capacity is not being used. Their are even residential rate structures designed to that shed peak demand. For instance, some utilities offer discount to residential customers to agree to allow the utility to remotely turn off water heaters for X number of minutes per hour during the high demand periods of the day.

By the way, utilities that have high percentages of their capacity going to industrial customers (like parts of Texas) can and do generally offer lower rates to their residential customers.
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Old 22-09-2016, 15:39   #98
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
.11 per kWh where I live for residential, industrial is only .05 per kWh?


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Peak for me is 0.18 per kwh (if you factor in the "delivery charger" it climbs to almost $0.36 kwh!!). we get the priviledge of having some of the most expensive hydro in North america...Ontario!! Industrial is only a few cents cheaper. thats why manufacturing is fleeing our juristicition!

Its not unheard of for people to spend $500 a month on hydro!!
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Old 22-09-2016, 17:09   #99
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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I myself am quite happy to have lived in California for 9 years now, without a utility bill.
ssshhhhh.

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All this due to solar and the fact that we have shut down all the coal fired plants in the province for the sake of the Greens even after spending hundreds of millions of dollars to install scrubbers and other clean technology in the plants because it was politically correct.
Not quite this simple. One of the reasons for the excess power is that the Nuclear plants can't be throttled back. Another is that Ontario sold off some 51% of the power system to private companies. Isn't free enterprise wonderful? You forgot to mention that Toronto has not had a "smog" alert since 2015 (I believe) since they shut down the coal-fired plants (or converted them to natural gas). The savings in health care costs will be huge. That doesn't just benefit Toronto residents but the whole population of southern Ontario. Bring on the green revolution.
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Old 22-09-2016, 17:54   #100
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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By the way, utilities that have high percentages of their capacity going to industrial customers (like parts of Texas) can and do generally offer lower rates to their residential customers.
You missed the part about electricity being deregulated in (almost all of) Texas. There is no "utility" offering rates to residential customers. In most of Texas, there are now three entities in the marketplace. Generators. Deregulated. Free for all. Transmission and distribution. Regulated monopoly (nobody wants competing wires). About $0.035/kwh. Retail Electric Providers. Deregulated. Free for all. REPs buy the cheapest generation they can find, bundle it with the T&D charge, and sell the bundle. See powertochoose.org for the many contracts for electricity available to residential customers. Sometimes REPs affer teaser rates of $0.01/kwh for energy.

In Texas, deregulation was pushed by industry, which believed that industrial rates subsidized residential rates. Now, the belief is that residential rates are subsidizing industrial rates (because of the bargaining power of big industrial users). Residential users are allowed to aggregate themselves to improve their bargaining power, but nobody does. (At $0.07/kwh, not top of anybody's to-do list.)
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Old 22-09-2016, 18:14   #101
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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This is exactly the situation in Ontario now. The Government of Ontario is signing contracts with gas fired generators at a rate of .35kwh for power during the night when all the solar systems are shut down. During the day we sell our power to the US for negative prices because there is too much on the grid and we need to get rid of it. All this due to solar and the fact that we have shut down all the coal fired plants in the province for the sake of the Greens even after spending hundreds of millions of dollars to install scrubbers and other clean technology in the plants because it was politically correct.

I in fact have a 10 kva system at our house that is grid tied. In Ontario a net metering system cannot be charged for time of day use and is charged out on monthly consumption. .08$ for first 800kwh and .11$ above that. On top of that they charge .11$ kwh for delivery.

When I produce more power than I consume they rebate me the same rates for the power but they only rebate half of the delivery charge. They also do not allow credits to be used to pay taxes or the monthly meter charge. If after 10 months I still have credits (unlikely due to low production in winter) they wipe out all remaining credits and start counting over again.

Ontarians pay the highest price for electricity in NA with the exception of California mostly due to the high prices paid to gas generators during the night as well as the cost of subsidising solar. We have created a mess.

Things will only get worse as new technology in Solar will within 10 years result in solar capacity doubling with the same size (sq foot) of panels as people upgrade their solar arrays. The limit in Ontario is 10kva for both net metering and microfit programs and the current rate for new installations for roof top systems is 0.35$ per kwh. Almost double what consumers currently pay.

We plan to get off the grid completely as soon as the battery technology is available to support our consumption rates. We will also need a 20kva solar system to accomplish this.
There are two types of natural gas plants. Base load turbines that look a whole lot like coal but with different fuel, and gas peaker plants that are incredibly expensive to operate.

If they shut down base load coal they almost certainly built base load gas. In most cases just by changing the fuel delivery and burners. If anything the cost to produce a kwh should go down. The problem is they spent a ton on new infrastructure. So at least in the US they could add the ROI of the investment to the bill.
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Old 23-09-2016, 08:23   #102
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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Originally Posted by Cottontop View Post
You missed the part about electricity being deregulated in (almost all of) Texas. There is no "utility" offering rates to residential customers. In most of Texas, there are now three entities in the marketplace. Generators. Deregulated. Free for all. Transmission and distribution. Regulated monopoly (nobody wants competing wires). About $0.035/kwh. Retail Electric Providers. Deregulated. Free for all. REPs buy the cheapest generation they can find, bundle it with the T&D charge, and sell the bundle. See powertochoose.org for the many contracts for electricity available to residential customers. Sometimes REPs affer teaser rates of $0.01/kwh for energy.

In Texas, deregulation was pushed by industry, which believed that industrial rates subsidized residential rates. Now, the belief is that residential rates are subsidizing industrial rates (because of the bargaining power of big industrial users). Residential users are allowed to aggregate themselves to improve their bargaining power, but nobody does. (At $0.07/kwh, not top of anybody's to-do list.)
Here in CT we have a split deregulated system too. But the regulated utility doing transmission is awful. We finally have low generation rates but with recent fee increases our delivery charge is now higher then our generation charge. Basically despite generation being well below .10 a KWH our total costs are the same as when it was at .14 a KWH. Drives me nuts. In fact a few towns have threatened to leave the utility and run transmission on their own because of it. There are a couple in CT that already do and their rates are much lower.
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Old 23-09-2016, 13:00   #103
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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There are two types of natural gas plants. Base load turbines that look a whole lot like coal but with different fuel, and gas peaker plants that are incredibly expensive to operate.

If they shut down base load coal they almost certainly built base load gas. In most cases just by changing the fuel delivery and burners. If anything the cost to produce a kwh should go down. The problem is they spent a ton on new infrastructure. So at least in the US they could add the ROI of the investment to the bill.
You obviously are not aware of how we do things here in Canada. Of the 5 Coal fired plants that accounted for 36% of electricity production in the province none were converted to gas fired as these conversions would not meet the efficiency standards that were imposed by the Government. In an RFP issued by the Government of Ontario the conversion of existing coal fired plants to gas was specifically precluded and I believe that all 5 facilities are now closed. The conversion to Biomass of the Thunder Bay facility was halted and I believe the facility is mothballed. The only remaining oil fired plant is in Lennox County and this facility can switch back and forth from Gas to Oil after the retrofit in 2009.
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Old 23-09-2016, 13:59   #104
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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ssshhhhh.



Not quite this simple. One of the reasons for the excess power is that the Nuclear plants can't be throttled back. Another is that Ontario sold off some 51% of the power system to private companies. Isn't free enterprise wonderful? You forgot to mention that Toronto has not had a "smog" alert since 2015 (I believe) since they shut down the coal-fired plants (or converted them to natural gas). The savings in health care costs will be huge. That doesn't just benefit Toronto residents but the whole population of southern Ontario. Bring on the green revolution.
The nuclear supply was a constant known value and has nothing to do with the daytime oversupply in Ontario. Ontario sold 49% of Ontario Hydro on the market and limited any individual company or person to a very small percentage of ownership. Most of the shares were purchased by gullible citizens of the province as no company would buy shares in a company that would still be controlled by the government and be run in such a haphazard way.

Because of the political boondoggle in shutting down the coal fired plants and the cancellation of contracts to appease nimbyism for 2 new gas fired plants in Toronto to win a provincial election, Ontario Hydro is a mess. Add to this the misguided subsidization of solar and wind that offered up to 0.81$ kwh at its peak and required purchasing domestically produced equipment for these installations that resulted in the Government being sued by foreign manufacturers under various free trade agreements and it resulted in a huge increase in debt for Ontario Hydro as well as all those new solar panel manufacturing plants shutting down. No other industry in Canada would be forced to bear the costs of such political decisions. Of course all these costs were then added to the bills of consumers.

My sister pays .05$ kwh in Alberta and Quebec consumers pay even less. Manufacturers are leaving Ontario and Companies are setting up facilities in Quebec where power is less than half of what it is here.

It is estimated that up to 3000 new coal fired plants will be built throughout the world by 2020 and none of these in the developed economies. Manufacturing moves to these sources of cheap power and labour resulting in loss of jobs and livelihood for Western Countries. At the same time we introduce carbon taxes which cannot be imposed on foreign corporations due to free trade agreements with developing countries. At the same time we continue to give billions to foreign countries to subsidize their own green energy programs (lol) so that we can appease the Greens in our own country.

Smart meters were introduced in Ontario several years ago which penalized consumption of power during the peak day time use period. Power produced during the day is now cheaper than power produced at night and yet we are still paying higher rates during the day. Why are we giving away our excess power or actually paying the US to take our power during the day and yet we are still charging consumers a higher rate for daytime power. Makes a lot of sense.

Before we put in the solar system and are now able to store our produced power on Ontario Hydro's grid (not really true but) our monthly hydro bills would be as high as $800.00 month, especially in mid winter or summer when heating or cooling with electricity. Now our annual bill is approximately
$1,200.00 saving us a minimum of $5,000.00 per year. This required a $45,000.00 investment but hey money is cheap today and the system will last at least 20 years before upgrading and by then solar technology will have at least doubled the capacity of the same size array.

Thank You Ontario taxpayer!!!
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Old 23-09-2016, 15:26   #105
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Re: Taxing Solar Energy

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That was in Cape Coral where a lady had gone off the grid. She was using rain water for drinking and flushing and has a couple PV's for power. The Judge said she had to be connected to city water and sewer. It was implied that power was required (which is a HUD requirement.) It's the goverment, they are here to protect us.
She was using the sewer system without paying for it, otherwise she might well have prevailed, though not without an expensive pissing contest with the city government.

Maybe not, though. For a city dweller, the requirement to use the city sewer is not likely to be waived without proof of an alternative that is equal to or better than the ideal of the city sewer. She did not have one, and probably could not have one. If you want to live off the grid in a city, you should probably understand that nobody around you wants your raw sewage slopping about, and the government is going to be fully supportive of that mindset.

Even so, her case was far more of one where, if you go all combative against government officials, they often brace up and defend without regard to being correct or not. That's an even worse problem, in my opinion, but very different than one where you're not allowed to live off the grid. See also, "contempt of cop."


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