PG&E/CPUC scandal thickens

Should of known PG&E was in the pockets of the cpuc. Solar producers are getting the shaft worse every year in california!!
http://healthimpactnews.com/2015/smart-meter-scandal-in-california-emails-reveal-cpuc-may-have-known-and-concealed-health-risks-and-other-problems/

Comments

  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 3,329 ✭✭✭✭
    PG & E, are they the ones who park on the roads in the shade or spend 18 hours in a hotel during a major outage? The management there still seems to think that they are safe from the offgrid threat because who wants to burn kerosene lamps at night. You guy's need to make some serious donations to them as less than 1/2 of PG&E has a clue. The CPUC is California which is the high speed rail and the drought.

    At least the have given up on draining Hetch Hetchy to turn this huge reservoir into another Yosemite. They are fighting some bad wildfires now pretty well also. Good Luck on that!
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail offgridsolar@sti.net

  • SolarPoweredSolarPowered Solar Expert Posts: 626 ✭✭✭
    Sad story for one of my clients. They are delaying GT solar installs into the grid up to 6 months and longer if they are service main upgrades. My client needed a 200amp service upgrade from a 125amp. We filed in dec of last year, and it just made completion in mid june.

    Slightly hindered his ROI. Filed a complaint under electric rules 11~21 and no word back not even a peep.PG&E has under 60 days to respond to project notices requiring service upgrades, but when it comes to solar they don't care and make every excuse in the book not to help.
  • AmpsterAmpster Registered Users Posts: 22
    Sad story for one of my clients. They are delaying GT solar installs into the grid up to 6 months and longer if they are service main upgrades. My client needed a 200amp service upgrade from a 125amp. We filed in dec of last year, and it just made completion in mid june.

    Slightly hindered his ROI. Filed a complaint under electric rules 11~21 and no word back not even a peep.PG&E has under 60 days to respond to project notices requiring service upgrades, but when it comes to solar they don't care and make every excuse in the book not to help.
    A similar situation has unfolded in Hawaii. HECO (Hawaii Electric) and its subsidiaries are dragging their feet on applications. Reportedly it is taking as long as a year to get approval for an application. With some of the highest energy rates in the country, this has given rise to a market for battery backed systems. I am not talking about full off grid systems but systems that can store some of the solar generated during the day to be used at night, thus reducing overall consumption. Apparently all that is needed is a building permit since this would be a behind the meter system with no grid tied generation. Therefore no permission required from HECO.

    Energy in Hawaii costs as much as $0.36/kWhr versus $0.11- 0.12/kWhr for the rest of the country. This could be the beginning of the death spiral for public utilites that get too greedy. Now I understand why some people call PG & E, Pacific Gouge & Electric
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators Posts: 26,872 admin
    I will say something nice about pge.... I put a new roof on my home and needed a new drop from the pole (upgrade to single cable set and raise off the ground more. I could almost stand on my toes and grab the lines).

    My service guy took several months to get the drop replaced. Pge/cpuc changed the rules again about which account and/or who paid.

    He worked very hard for a no cost upgrade for me. So thank you to the "little guys" at pge who really do care.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 3,329 ✭✭✭✭
    That's nice Bill. Not a good business model to work for free though....
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail offgridsolar@sti.net

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators Posts: 26,872 admin
    Actually after the first month, I was telling him I wanted to pay the ~$500 charge myself and get the job done--But the service rep. was not going to let the bureaucracy win (they had been collecting service fees on the address for $50+ years for a substandard drop).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • AmpsterAmpster Registered Users Posts: 22
    My experience with the field and phone personnel with SCE has also been good. My issue with California public utilities is they are not adjusting to the realities of what is happening in the marketplace. That may be said for some other states as well. In California the California Energy Commission has forced them to acquire many megawatts of battery storage by 2020. I have read that battery storage is competitive with Turbine Gas Peaker plants. If that is true, it is good news for us because that competitive battery pricing is likely to trickle down to us over time..
  • SkiDoo55SkiDoo55 Solar Expert Posts: 414 ✭✭✭
    Side note to PG&E and rates.  Just got notice in mail from them that the minimum monthly Delivery Charge is going up starting Sept 1, 2015 to $10.00 per month from $4.50 per month. No changes in rate structure.
    Nice to get it 15 days after it went into effect.
    GT3.8 w/4600W Trina 230W, TX5000 w/5000W ET-250W, XW4024 w/1500W ET-250W, 4 L16, 5500W Gen. (never had to use) Yet!!
  • SolarPoweredSolarPowered Solar Expert Posts: 626 ✭✭✭
    The rate hike is listed in AB327. Whats even worse about AB327 is that NEM 20 year contracts will no longer be available after the megawatt cap. California has less than 800MW left before NEM agreements become a month to month billing, and utility providers will no longer provide over production credits, and 4 stage tiering now becomes 2 stage tiering. We are all about to be screwed...Big Time

    https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201320140AB327
  • AmpsterAmpster Registered Users Posts: 22
    edited September 2015 #11
    There was similar concern over a change in rates that SCE initiated in the Spring of this year. As it turned out there was very little change in the bills of the users that I communicated with. Some of that dialogue can be seen at protectourrates.com
    Have you done any financial modeling of the new rates to see how much PG&E customers are getting screwed?
    From what I can tell AB327 was approved in 2013. Is that the correct link?
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 3,329 ✭✭✭✭
    The commercial I heard yesterday for Sunpower was that "better go solar now as residential solar will be Net metered on a daily basis instead of yearly" The usual tax credit going away and all. We do live in interesting times!
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail offgridsolar@sti.net

  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 3,329 ✭✭✭✭
    Do you think they will change the Net Metering scheme to a daily affair?  Bill ?
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail offgridsolar@sti.net

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators Posts: 26,872 admin
    With remote reading meters, I believe the holy grail will be market pricing for power (24 hour in advance pricing).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • AmpsterAmpster Registered Users Posts: 22
    The commercial I heard yesterday for Sunpower was that "better go solar now as residential solar will be Net metered on a daily basis instead of yearly" The usual tax credit going away and all. We do live in interesting times!

    Do you think they will change the Net Metering scheme to a daily affair?  Bill ?

    Some of that is old news and some is speculation framed in a way to encourage people to buy systems. I believe the federal tax credit expires at the end of 2016. We don't know if Congress will extend that. I have not seen any applications for daily net metering. I did see a recent rate request where the IOU's wanted a fixed fee for NEM customers. The CPUC only gave them a $10 per month fixed charge and told them to work on a plan to put all customers on TOU rates. If I understood that dialogue the hope was to drive down usage during the peak times. It will take a lot of equipment upgrades to go to daily metering. That concept may help them manage loads.

    I hope Outback Power stays on top of this. I would love to have my system respond dynamically to rate changes. Currently it is programmed to drop the grid during Peak (14:00 to 20:00) so I maximize the solar power that goes back to the grid.  I charge it at the super off peak rates. The payback is long even though the rate differential is 33 cents. 
  • Dave AngeliniDave Angelini Solar Expert Posts: 3,329 ✭✭✭✭
    It probably is just selling  grid systems before year end.  If they did change net metering would people like Bill, ampster, and others be grandfathered in?  
    "we go where power lines don't" Sierra Mountains near Mariposa/Yosemite CA
     http://members.sti.net/offgridsolar/
    E-mail offgridsolar@sti.net

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators Posts: 26,872 admin
    20 years from date of installation. But they did increase monthly fee to $10.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • AmpsterAmpster Registered Users Posts: 22
    Yes, I am grandfathered for another 19 years. After that my batteries will be ready for replacement and cheaper systems will be available. If our investor owned utilities don't adjust by then,  they may be bankrupt. Some utilities in some states are seeing the benefits of renewables but those utilities are few.
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