Utilities, solar companies in fight over rates
Utilities in many states say solar-friendly rate plans, conceived to promote alternative energy sources, are too generous and allow solar customers to avoid paying for the grid even though they use it.
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#1 Oct 27, 2013
Yes Solar PV system owners use the grid, they also give back to it.
They generate very valuable local electric that is bought for way below any other power types such as Coal, Gas or Nuclear when all costs are considered.
The fact that power grids waste over 55 percent of generation due to line loss makes local generation very efficient and valuable.
So the Solar systems give more than they take.
Utilities need to work together with all types of clean energy to keep us moving forward as stewards of this Earth.
#2 Oct 27, 2013
APS in particular is taking up the position, that homeowners and business owners who put solar PV on their roofs are not paying their "fair" share of line and maintenance costs. In California AB327 has passed and the CPUC will determine what "fair" line and maintenance costs are and then break them out of the KWh rate. What is NOT being taken into account is the "avoided" costs of not having to build a new peaker plant, file EIRs, buy property get rights of way and build new power corridors to get the power to market. The utility doesn't have to go to court to defend a project and all the attendant delays of going to court. Then there's the avoided cost of not having to maintain the private solar PV system. If they really believe in being "fair" then the avoided costs should be removed from the KWh rates the ratepayers without solar PV are paying now. So, who really is NOT paying the line and maintenance charges? Since 2010 till 2013 utilities are installing 2.5 times more solar than residential homeowners are.
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