HAVE YOU EVER SEEN A GOVERNMENT AGENCY ACT SO BRAZENLY AGAINST PUBLIC OPINION?
- Dec 22, 2022 4:02 pm GMT
That’s what happened on the Ides of December at 505 Van Ness Avenue. After listening to some three hours of public commentary on the revised Proposed Decision (PD) on NEM 3.0 from this past month, most of which vociferously opposed it, I was convinced that the CPUC would take notice of which way the winds were blowing and show a spirit of accommodation, even if they had gone into the session prepared to approve the revised PD. At the minimum, one or two commissioners would offer a dissenting opinion.
The fact that the vote was 5-0 is very telling. It's a very risky move on the CPUC's part, since they are swimming against the tide. They must know what happened in Nevada and Kansas. Suffice it to say that it was not pleasant.
After the original PD was issued by the CPUC last December, the citizens of California weighed in with hundreds of comments and mass rallies. Several of the state’s leading newspapers weighed in with editorials. I don't recall seeing such a strong swell of public opinion on any topic related to electricity.
In January, I debated the provisions of that PD with an academic. At the end, a poll revealed that only a third agreed with my opponent’s views.
Two of its atrocious features – a grid access charge and retroactivity – were removed in the second PD. But the drastic drop in export competition was preserved.
I installed a solar+storage system back in December 2019 and was given permission to operate in January 2020. My payback was estimated at 9 years (it would have been 7 years if I had just installed solar).
Now, I am being told that had I waited until this coming April, under the new rules which have just been approved, the payback for my system would have been less than 7 years.
Is that possible? When you cut the export compensation rate by 75%, the payback should be longer.
I am being told I would come out ahead because the export compensation rate in the evening hours has been raised several times of the current rate.
But, as I have shown in several prior posts, there is nothing for me to export in the evening hours. The battery just powers the house and often runs out around 7:30 or 8:00 pm in the winter. Then I buy power from the grid which, under the new rules, would be VERY expensive.
The math behind the 7 year payback eludes me, as do most of the numbers and assumptions in the revised PD which the commission has memorialized today.
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