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(AZCentral)   Energy company in Arizona is encouraging homeowners to put solar panels on their roofs by offering all kinds of incentives. Just kidding. They're threatening to jack up the monthly bill of anybody who does that   (azcentral.com) divider line 187
    More: Asinine, energy industry, bonuses, natural kind, ratepayers, rooftops, solar panels, homeowners, Arizona Corporation Commission  
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14668 clicks; posted to Main » on 12 Jul 2013 at 2:22 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-07-12 01:02:21 AM
Will they credit me if I install rain panels? haha just kidding I'm not on APS.
 
2013-07-12 01:38:44 AM
are these people feeding power back into the grid? because if so they do cause the power company some headaches.

If they just have a box that doesn't draw from the grid unless the solar panels and batteries aren't cutting it, there isn't really a "service" that APS is providing them.
 
2013-07-12 01:51:23 AM
corporate douchebaggery
 
2013-07-12 02:12:10 AM

Bucky Katt: corporate douchebaggery


Meh. They did suck when I was on lines they maintained, but just about everything they try to do, good or bad, is still regulated by the elected commissioners of the corporation commission. And the ACC likes renewable energy.
 
2013-07-12 02:12:42 AM

Asa Phelps: are these people feeding power back into the grid? because if so they do cause the power company some headaches.


Yes - The meter can spin backwards if you generate more than you draw. Of course, during the peak hours you might pay $0.25/kWh for usage, but if your array does generate more than it draws, you only get the off-peak rate of about $0.05/kWh in crediting towards your bill (despite it generating during peak time). So APS is already making $0.15/kWh off of your panels by reselling your power when they need it, but now they want another $100/mo?

I won't invest in solar since they're a 5-10 year ROI, but this would basically negate that indefinitely. Which is of course what APS wants, and I hope the regulators see this.
 
2013-07-12 02:16:33 AM
img692.imageshack.us
 
2013-07-12 02:25:36 AM
It never really made sense that they would pay individual energy producers for power. I'm surprised that this kind of thing hasn't already been enacted.

Tepco here in Japan, reeling from the sudden reduced energy usage after the tsunami, decided that raising rates to keep revenue levels up was a better course of action than letting their management bonuses lapse.
 
2013-07-12 02:26:16 AM

Asa Phelps: are these people feeding power back into the grid? because if so they do cause the power company some headaches.

If they just have a box that doesn't draw from the grid unless the solar panels and batteries aren't cutting it, there isn't really a "service" that APS is providing them.


Actually that can be quite useful to the power companies. The big issue these days with power isn't generation, it is distribution. In the Us we have adequate generation for our needs and we can build more as needed. However distribution is an issue, because people don't want power plants near their house. It is a constant issue for grid controllers how to get power to people at peak times without overloading segments of the grid. Solar panels can really help, particularly since they tend to do a lot of output when it is hot, which is when the load is high in AZ. Since they are local, not at the end of big links (which are what gets overloaded) it works well.
 
2013-07-12 02:27:43 AM

AverageAmericanGuy: It never really made sense that they would pay individual energy producers for power. I'm surprised that this kind of thing hasn't already been enacted.

Tepco here in Japan, reeling from the sudden reduced energy usage after the tsunami, decided that raising rates to keep revenue levels up was a better course of action than letting their management bonuses lapse.


It's comforting to know that assholes are everywhere. Reaffirms faith in the universal order.
 
2013-07-12 02:35:12 AM
I can see maybe tacking on an extra maintenance fee, but $50-100 a month seems insane. While I realize we don't have to run the AC as much here as in Arizona, I've never had my electric bill over $200.
 
2013-07-12 02:35:19 AM
How is Arizona not 100% solar already? I could probably make a killing there if I designed and produced some kind of simple solar-powered fan or AC unit.
 
2013-07-12 02:35:42 AM

sycraft: Asa Phelps: are these people feeding power back into the grid? because if so they do cause the power company some headaches.

If they just have a box that doesn't draw from the grid unless the solar panels and batteries aren't cutting it, there isn't really a "service" that APS is providing them.

Actually that can be quite useful to the power companies. The big issue these days with power isn't generation, it is distribution. In the Us we have adequate generation for our needs and we can build more as needed. However distribution is an issue, because people don't want power plants near their house. It is a constant issue for grid controllers how to get power to people at peak times without overloading segments of the grid. Solar panels can really help, particularly since they tend to do a lot of output when it is hot, which is when the load is high in AZ. Since they are local, not at the end of big links (which are what gets overloaded) it works well.


as i understand it, there are maintenance & management costs incurred by having so many different sources of current, but most of them are related to synchronizing generator waveforms.
 
2013-07-12 02:36:00 AM
Solar power is unnatural and against Gods will. Why would he go to the trouble of creating natural oil for us to use, straight from the earth, if he wanted us to mess with science.
 
2013-07-12 02:38:33 AM
I saw this on the news, and I don't think that the rate hike would prevent me from putting panels on my roof.  You still are paying far less than you would if you were 100% relying on APS/SRP. (This month's electric bill, $397 for a 2400 sf house - I am at $150 in the winter).

When we were shopping for a house, I would ask the agent if it was APS or SRP (then what bandwidth was available).  I think RE agents need to understand that these things really matter.
 
2013-07-12 02:39:00 AM
Not smart, utility manager CFO person. In ten, 20 years you may NEED your customers' ability to distribute electrical loads, maybe even draw power from everyone's electric cars when there's a brief excess demand.

Your average Arizonan is retired, watches their bill like a hawk, and has no problem holding a grudge against a utility for decades more.

For example: my parents. In the 1980's some brilliant AT&T exec decided that touch tone dialing would cost an extra monthly $1 or whatever. Nope, my parents were more than happy with their pulse rotary dialing phone, kthxbye Mr AT&T person. Then AT&T wanted all customers to upgrade to touch tone. Nope. Not gonna happen. Then my parents were the last people on that switch still using rotary and AT&T really really really needed their pulse rotary phone off their system.

It's 2013 and my parents still pulse dial out of spite over that stupid shortsighted touch tone dial surcharge from 30 years ago.

They also are thinking of buying an electric car and if the utility ever wants to do that "smart" distributed power thing where they temporarily draw power from electric cars? My dad will be in the garage, unplugging the car. Because he's retired, and has nothing better to do than pay the utility back for their petty billing act over the next couple of decades.
 
2013-07-12 02:39:21 AM

dangelder: How is Arizona not 100% solar already? I could probably make a killing there if I designed and produced some kind of simple solar-powered fan or AC unit.


Politics, pure politics. That's why.
 
2013-07-12 02:42:06 AM

Freschel: dangelder: How is Arizona not 100% solar already? I could probably make a killing there if I designed and produced some kind of simple solar-powered fan or AC unit.

Politics, pure politics. That's why.


Keeping down solar in Arizona makes hippies cry. Isn't that reason enough?
 
2013-07-12 02:43:08 AM

Asa Phelps: are these people feeding power back into the grid? because if so they do cause the power company some headaches.

If they just have a box that doesn't draw from the grid unless the solar panels and batteries aren't cutting it, there isn't really a "service" that APS is providing them.


Feeding power back only causes headaches if they have a shiatty power grid.

If they have a non-shiatty grid, it provides a significant benefit to the power companies because the power company doesn't need to generate as much power to meet demand of businesses during the day.  Look at the power demand curve (CAISO, for instance) and you'll understand.  Power draw during business hours is much higher than during non-business hours.  All of that excess energy generated by solar systems helps normalize the demand on the power company's generating systems.  And solar is very predictable and reliable with the amount generated correlating pretty well with that peak demand during business hours.  They couldn't design a more useful supplementary power system if they tried.
 
2013-07-12 02:43:21 AM

AverageAmericanGuy: It never really made sense that they would pay individual energy producers for power. I'm surprised that this kind of thing hasn't already been enacted.

Tepco here in Japan, reeling from the sudden reduced energy usage after the tsunami, decided that raising rates to keep revenue levels up was a better course of action than letting their management bonuses lapse.


Have a citation for that? That strikes me as.. something a gaijin would do.

/Gaijin
//I'd like to go back at some point. 86-89.
///Miss Tokyo.
 
2013-07-12 02:45:09 AM
This is why infastructure should not be privatised.

It doesn't make sense for everyone to duplicate storage and inverters.
 
2013-07-12 02:45:50 AM
We're starting to need a Zonie tag. It's like Florida with less hot chicks and more boring food.
 
2013-07-12 02:52:55 AM

SearchN: AverageAmericanGuy: It never really made sense that they would pay individual energy producers for power. I'm surprised that this kind of thing hasn't already been enacted.

Tepco here in Japan, reeling from the sudden reduced energy usage after the tsunami, decided that raising rates to keep revenue levels up was a better course of action than letting their management bonuses lapse.

Have a citation for that? That strikes me as.. something a gaijin would do.

/Gaijin
//I'd like to go back at some point. 86-89.
///Miss Tokyo.


I'll look for one. It was a big deal during the summer of 2011. Most everyone pitched in to conserve energy because of the loss of the Fukushima plant.

From 2011: Rates raised 3% due to revenue shortfall and debts.
http://business.nikkeibp.co.jp/article/topics/20110823/222219/

From 2012: Tepco got govt approval to raise rates by 8.46% (they wanted over 10%)
http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2012/07/26/business/tepco-gets-ok-t o- raise-electricity-rates-8-46/#.Ud-mXT7k8dI
 
2013-07-12 02:55:10 AM

Bonzo_1116: AverageAmericanGuy: It never really made sense that they would pay individual energy producers for power. I'm surprised that this kind of thing hasn't already been enacted.

Tepco here in Japan, reeling from the sudden reduced energy usage after the tsunami, decided that raising rates to keep revenue levels up was a better course of action than letting their management bonuses lapse.

It's comforting to know that assholes are everywhere. Reaffirms faith in the universal order.


Biggest lesson I learned from my wife are that people are the same all over. The details vary, but the motivations remain constant.
 
2013-07-12 02:56:10 AM
WAITAFARKINGMINUTE... these corporate assholes want to charge people MORE because they refuse to waste their product?
"Bu-bu-bu the grid is on 24 hours a day!" SO FARKING WHAT? I pay for the time I'm using the grid.
THIS is why solar is catching hell, not the cost of the panels or any of that sh*t. The corporations want that cashflow to their greedy assed shareholders.

Fark that sh*t. NO.
 
2013-07-12 02:56:26 AM
img593.imageshack.us

imageshack.us
 
2013-07-12 02:57:00 AM
You couldn't pay me to live in that shiathole of a state.
 
2013-07-12 02:57:32 AM

sminkypinky: Solar power is unnatural and against Gods will. Why would he go to the trouble of creating natural oil for us to use, straight from the earth, if he wanted us to mess with science.


If God wanted us to use solar energy, He would have put it everywhere, like gas stations.
 
2013-07-12 02:59:45 AM

Asa Phelps: are these people feeding power back into the grid? because if so they do cause the power company some headaches.

If they just have a box that doesn't draw from the grid unless the solar panels and batteries aren't cutting it, there isn't really a "service" that APS is providing them.


If  they're getting no service, why don't they just withdraw from the grid?  Oh, because  they  need it sometimes.  But when they need it and it works for them, that's not a service that APS provides.  Just look at how foolish you look!

Until solar systems are totally self-sufficient day or night, rain or shine, customers need the grid and have to pay for it. So, solar industry, get busy and make such systems.   That's innovation; this is politicking.
 
2013-07-12 03:00:58 AM

AverageAmericanGuy: It never really made sense that they would pay individual energy producers for power. I'm surprised that this kind of thing hasn't already been enacted.

Tepco here in Japan, reeling from the sudden reduced energy usage after the tsunami, decided that raising rates to keep revenue levels up was a better course of action than letting their management bonuses lapse.


Saving up for the inevitable damages and fines that they will have to pay.
 
2013-07-12 03:03:09 AM

rewind2846: WAITAFARKINGMINUTE... these corporate assholes want to charge people MORE because they refuse to waste their product?
"Bu-bu-bu the grid is on 24 hours a day!" SO FARKING WHAT? I pay for the time I'm using the grid.
THIS is why solar is catching hell, not the cost of the panels or any of that sh*t. The corporations want that cashflow to their greedy assed shareholders.

Fark that sh*t. NO.


But anything that causes corporations' profits to drop in any way is unconstitutional, immoral, and makes you EXACTLY the same as Stalin!
 
2013-07-12 03:03:16 AM

Asa Phelps: are these people feeding power back into the grid? because if so they do cause the power company some headaches.


Except in a place like Arizona, photo voltaic produces power in phase with demand from air conditioning.  Thus reducing the amount of peeking power needed to supply the grid.  And supplying power at night, you ever see an 'adult community' after 9pm?  It's lights out.
 
2013-07-12 03:04:42 AM

HotWingAgenda: We're starting to need a Zonie tag. It's like Florida with less hot chicks and more boring food.


?  Food here in Phoenix is actually quite good and varied, not sure where you're getting that.  There's good Mexican of course, lots of very quality Thai places for some reason, a few random African countries, most of Asia represented in good restaurants.  I can't think of any kind of food that doesn't have at least one good restaurant here.  You can even get very good buffalo wings.
 
2013-07-12 03:08:39 AM
This is the same battle that's being fought between electric car makers and State depts. of transportation.  Even if your car uses zero gasoline, you still have to pay for the farking roads to drive it on.
 
2013-07-12 03:10:20 AM

BarkingUnicorn: Until solar systems are totally self-sufficient day or night, rain or shine, customers need the grid and have to pay for it. So, solar industry, get busy and make such systems.   That's innovation; this is politicking.


They do make these systems. But it would be a ridiculous waste of energy and resources to require city users to all put in their own seperate battery banks and inverters.

The whole idea of clean energy is to reduce waste.
 
2013-07-12 03:12:10 AM

Gig103: Asa Phelps: are these people feeding power back into the grid? because if so they do cause the power company some headaches.

Yes - The meter can spin backwards if you generate more than you draw. Of course, during the peak hours you might pay $0.25/kWh for usage, but if your array does generate more than it draws, you only get the off-peak rate of about $0.05/kWh in crediting towards your bill (despite it generating during peak time). So APS is already making $0.15/kWh off of your panels by reselling your power when they need it, but now they want another $100/mo?

I won't invest in solar since they're a 5-10 year ROI, but this would basically negate that indefinitely. Which is of course what APS wants, and I hope the regulators see this.




Give some to your neighbor and...

Now I sound like a commie.
 
2013-07-12 03:15:00 AM

HotWingAgenda: We're starting to need a Zonie tag. It's like Florida with less hot chicks and more boring food.


We have hot chicks. Sometimes they even catch fire, if they don't apply the sunblock. I don't even want to hear derp about the food, Sonoran cuisine is amazing.
 
2013-07-12 03:15:43 AM

BarkingUnicorn: This is the same battle that's being fought between electric car makers and State depts. of transportation.  Even if your car uses zero gasoline, you still have to pay for the farking roads to drive it on.


Except driving a car has a net negative impact on society as a whole.  Installing and using solar panels has a net positive impact on society as a whole.  So government has a vested interest in subsidizing solar panels, whereas it has none in subsidizing cars.
 
2013-07-12 03:16:22 AM
LordJiro - But anything that causes corporations' profits to drop in any way is unconstitutional, immoral, and makes you EXACTLY the same as Stalin!

It always makes me angry that these corporate weasels won't just come on out and admit this is how they think, instead of spending massive amounts on advertising to try and convince us they have us little people in mind in everything they do.
 
2013-07-12 03:20:11 AM

Rising_Zan_Samurai_Gunman: I can see maybe tacking on an extra maintenance fee, but $50-100 a month seems insane. While I realize we don't have to run the AC as much here as in Arizona, I've never had my electric bill over $200.


Cheap, quickly built homes with zero, and I mean, zero insulation = $300 a month and up for under 2000sf. I'm not kidding, I could put my hand on an exterior wall and feel the heat through it.

dangelder: How is Arizona not 100% solar already? I could probably make a killing there if I designed and produced some kind of simple solar-powered fan or AC unit.


Because solar is for hippies, and Aribama is 100% red-blooded Amurricans.
 
2013-07-12 03:20:22 AM

dangelder: How is Arizona not 100% solar already? I could probably make a killing there if I designed and produced some kind of simple solar-powered fan or AC unit.


You specist, dont you care about the vetchweed?
 
2013-07-12 03:23:07 AM
Meanwhile, in that sunny paradise that is Germany ...https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_power_in_Germany

Plus, they have kind of a "i generate twice as much power as your haus, mein freunde. hahaha "
 
2013-07-12 03:25:19 AM

zzrhardy: BarkingUnicorn: Until solar systems are totally self-sufficient day or night, rain or shine, customers need the grid and have to pay for it. So, solar industry, get busy and make such systems.   That's innovation; this is politicking.

They do make these systems. But it would be a ridiculous waste of energy and resources to require city users to all put in their own seperate battery banks and inverters.


Nobody's required to put in any solar system.  If you can't afford to go totally off the grid, then you have to pay for the grid's availability.  If that irks you, save or borrow money until you can afford to go off the grid.

The whole idea of clean energy is to reduce waste.

But clean energy is not the whole idea of solar energy.  The main idea is to save gobs of money on one's electric bill.  If that isn't true, then the solar industry has nothing to fear from this APS proposal.
 
2013-07-12 03:28:41 AM

Abner Doon: BarkingUnicorn: This is the same battle that's being fought between electric car makers and State depts. of transportation.  Even if your car uses zero gasoline, you still have to pay for the farking roads to drive it on.

Except driving a car has a net negative impact on society as a whole.  Installing and using solar panels has a net positive impact on society as a whole.  So government has a vested interest in subsidizing solar panels, whereas it has none in subsidizing cars.


Oh, yes, cars have a net negative impact on society; that is why there are so few of them, and so few miles of roads for them to use.
 
2013-07-12 03:39:15 AM

Asa Phelps: as i understand it, there are maintenance & management costs incurred by having so many different sources of current, but most of them are related to synchronizing generator waveforms.


you're a waveform.
 
2013-07-12 03:39:39 AM

evil saltine: Asa Phelps: as i understand it, there are maintenance & management costs incurred by having so many different sources of current, but most of them are related to synchronizing generator waveforms.

you're a waveform.


Your face is a waveform!
 
2013-07-12 03:42:32 AM
Invest in batteries and cut the cord.
Problem solved.
 
2013-07-12 03:44:42 AM

SearchN: Have a citation for that? That strikes me as.. something a gaijin would do.


Japan still gives business licenses to THE YAKUZA. They're officially business consultants.

They could teach Wall Street a thing or two about corruption.
 
2013-07-12 03:55:15 AM

BarkingUnicorn: Abner Doon: BarkingUnicorn: This is the same battle that's being fought between electric car makers and State depts. of transportation.  Even if your car uses zero gasoline, you still have to pay for the farking roads to drive it on.

Except driving a car has a net negative impact on society as a whole.  Installing and using solar panels has a net positive impact on society as a whole.  So government has a vested interest in subsidizing solar panels, whereas it has none in subsidizing cars.

Oh, yes, cars have a net negative impact on society; that is why there are so few of them, and so few miles of roads for them to use.


Are you seriously arguing that there's a bunch of them, so they must be good for society?  Because I don't think I even have to bother refuting that.

But ignoring that, and going into more detail, yes you driving a car is a net negative.  It'd be far far better overall if you used public transportation of some kind, or at least car-pooled, thus having less cars on the road.  Keep in mind, here "better" means for society as a whole, counting in the cost to the environment and etc.  Having roads and such infrastructure is a net positive, you personally driving is not.  Seems a bit counter-intuitive at first I guess, but if you think about it it's pretty obvious.
 
Ni
2013-07-12 03:55:40 AM

Asa Phelps: as i understand it, there are maintenance & management costs incurred by having so many different sources of current, but most of them are related to synchronizing generator waveforms.


Then you don't understand it. The inverter for solar panels does exactly that. It synchs waveforms perfectly. In times of excess production, it ramps up the voltage to feed it back into the grid. And if the power is lost, the inverter shuts down so that the lineman who comes out to fix it doesn't zap the shiat out of himself from the other direction.

The only possible issue is if the power company uses idiotic meters that can't handle reverse flow... but I haven't heard of anyone installing those in a sunbelt state. That would be the most insanely dumb thing to do, but I guess that wouldn't surprise me... we are talking the Home of Arpaio.

zzrhardy: This is why infastructure should not be privatised.
It doesn't make sense for everyone to duplicate storage and inverters.


I hear you talking, but not making any sense. Very few people use storage who are on the grid, and inverters make perfect sense.

There's this thing called capacitance which results in transmission loss even on the high tension wires. When your house is 300 miles from the coal-smokin' generator and needs 50 kWh of power, they have to send you maybe 60 kWh because a lot of electrons will be lost travelling 300 miles due to the wires not being superconductors. And they have to send extra for all your neighbors, too.

However, if "infrastructure was privatized" by the homeowners, suddenly the efficiency goes way the hell up because it doesn't have to travel 300 mi to get to you, but more like 300 feet. And what you don't use goes only another couple hundred feet to your neighbors. As a result, during peak times the ripoff power company doesn't have to stoke up the fires and in fact gets a huge bonus due to higher efficiency in solar-dense areas. So let's say you produce twice what you need and feed the rest to your neighbor, the power company has to send both of you 0 kWh and pay for 100kWh (which you produced), when they would have normally had to send 120kWh and charge for 100kWh. They basically saved themselves 20kWh and did nothing.
 
2013-07-12 04:06:08 AM

Abner Doon: BarkingUnicorn: Abner Doon: BarkingUnicorn: This is the same battle that's being fought between electric car makers and State depts. of transportation.  Even if your car uses zero gasoline, you still have to pay for the farking roads to drive it on.

Except driving a car has a net negative impact on society as a whole.  Installing and using solar panels has a net positive impact on society as a whole.  So government has a vested interest in subsidizing solar panels, whereas it has none in subsidizing cars.

Oh, yes, cars have a net negative impact on society; that is why there are so few of them, and so few miles of roads for them to use.

Are you seriously arguing that there's a bunch of them, so they must be good for society?  Because I don't think I even have to bother refuting that.


It would have less of a net negative impact on society if you just wrote, "I can't refute that."  Every bit transmitted over the Internet pollutes, y'know.

Obviously, cars have had great positive impact on society and continue to  do so.  Show me a town or even a subdivision that is built without roads, parking spaces, garages, gas stations, etc.  Car bring people.  People  bring money. Cars or trucks bring stuff. People buy stuff.  It's called an economy.


But ignoring that, and going into more detail, yes you driving a car is a net negative.  It'd be far far better overall if you used public transportation of some kind, or at least car-pooled, thus having less cars on the road.  Keep in mind, here "better" means for society as a whole, counting in the cost to the environment and etc.  Having roads and such infrastructure is a net positive, you personally driving is not.  Seems a bit counter-intuitive at first I guess, but if you think about it it's pretty obvious.

Then it would be better for society if we lived 100 to a barracks, ate in mess halls, and shared toothbrushes, too.
 
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