"It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong." Richard P. Feynman

Monday, October 8, 2012

Solar homes should pay distribution costs

Energy distributors say that non-solar homes are paying the bulk of the poles-and-wires distribution cost causing their power costs to soar. This is the obvious result of the rip-off-your-neighbour solar rebate scheme put in place by our mentally-challenged pollies as a sop to the greenies. It is now proposed that solar homes pay a levy or connection cost for distribution which makes a lot of  sense. An argument is made for time-of-use tariffs to reduce peak demand which can reduce requirement for peaking plant but at the end of the day power generators have to survive and if peak rates are reduced non-peak rates will increase.

AUSTRALIA'S 800,000 solar-powered homes should be slugged more to plug into the main electricity grid, so as to reduce costs for other families, energy distributors say.
As households try to offset skyrocketing bills, an explosion of solar photovoltaic panel installations has seen an extra 400,000 homes go green in the past year.
But the Energy Networks Association, which represents distributors, says this has done little to reduce power use at peak times, such as in the evenings.
The ENA says companies still have to replace and upgrade poles and wires - the main driver of high electricity bills - and non-solar homes foot the majority of costs.
But an energy expert said networks made their money off peak demand.
ENA chief executive Malcolm Roberts said more flexible tariffs such as time-of-use pricing were needed, and a new connection charge for solar-powered homes.
"Like a telephone bill, customers should be paying a reasonable charge for the infrastructure connection as well as a volume-based charge for the energy they use via that connection," he said.

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