Today’s Challenge. Make sense out of this post.

Is there a more  honest environment to compare equipment and to access it’s value than an off grid site? I think the only challenge is the making of a complete inventory of your efforts and materials so you can know the true costs. The DIYer has a rather huge advantage, he can buy good used equipment when others upgrade, he can do all the labor himself.

I have to admit, I can’t make any sense out of the following  post, how exactly does his concerns spill into the off grid market? I only suggest I don’t understand, do you?

Is it something in the water?

Have a great day…


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9 Responses to Today’s Challenge. Make sense out of this post.

  1. Russ D. says:

    Quote from article;
    “With the rate changes, Nevada regulators are demonstrating the willingness and ease with which government can neutralize the “off-grid” movement while protecting their favorite utilities. Rooftop solar, along with innovations such as Tesla’s Powerwall, represents a huge opportunity for people to free themselves from an energy structure ruled by corporations and state co-conspirators.”

    I have to agree George, I don’t see the connection between someone truly off grid and this article.

    IMHO, this article pretty much is complaining because the PUC has decided to raise fees on grid tied systems.

    Well if you’re still tied to the grid then you’re not off grid are you? So you’re still at the mercy of the PUC if they decide you’re not paying your fair share to help maintain the grid and generating equipment.

    Pretty much like Oregon wanting to charge a ‘per mile’ fee instead of getting finances thru fuel tax.

  2. George B. says:

    Thanks for the comment Russ, I think the Author might have made the jump that no one would be there to install off grid, if the bread and butter ‘Grid Tied’ jobs were not being done?

    Since the PUC must meet peak loads, the costs of doing so should be shared by all power producers. A peak KWH could cost the PUC well over a dollar, the fair price for an off peak KWH might be close to free IF everyone wants to sell it. The peak producers must be paid, and it can be very expensive to scramble equipment on line to meet it, and that’s the reason for the higher cost. So… maybe you position yourself to be a peak producer?

    Some day, when the grid is a little more sophisticated, there might be popular and cheaper service, where you are ‘cut off’during peak loads? This could prevent the PUC from having to tender the cost of meeting high peaks, OR your batteries could help cover the peaks at a premium price?

    A peak producer is likely more welcomed by the PUC than a subsidy harvester. No new thoughts shared here…

  3. Quinn says:


    Last Spring I drove my Prius to Tulsa and returned home by way of Burley, ID, where I stopped in to see a friend. And to buy a new set of tires, after driving on what passes for dirt roads in that region. But I digress. . .

    I left Burley around noon, and buzzed through Lost Wages in late afternoon. It was a warm Spring day, bright and sunny. But when I passed the Ivanpaugh solar plant south of ‘Vegas, I was struck by the enormity of the place. The three towers were in operation, and the air, as far as one could see, seemed to be a scorching blue-ish color. I thought of stopping to take a gander at the place, but I was glad to get past the place, where the air was a more normal color.

    A few articles I’ve read indicate that the three plants aren’t performing up to snuff. Big surprise, there! So I wonder whether the NPUC’s recent action to screw the rooftop solar users might be to prop up their balance sheet due to Ivanpaugh’s under-performance.

    I also wonder whether, since so many rate-payers invested their hard-earned after-tax money in rooftop solar installations might provide grounds for a class-action suit against the NPUC.

    As has been shown recently with the advent of Obamacare, government-run enterprises can’t successfully compete in the free market without tilting the playing field in their favor. So they hate competition.

    • George B. says:

      You went to Burley? I’m sure you stopped to see a Mutual Friend 🙂

      As for Ivanpah, with the current low cost of natural gas, I think the plant will do fine. My mind is boggled by the number of mirrors to keep clean, and I’d bet there’s a lot of wind driven dust and dirt at times. I wonder what’s it’s like to wipe a mirror clean with all that grit on it? I think I’d be plenty happy, if I could sell the Ivanpah Maintenance Dept windex and squeegees. Up till now, it seems the KISS designed Solar plants generate the better return on investment, but they can’t take advantage of the low low price of natural gas.

      Some mine bitcoins, others mine subsidies, the later comes out of our pockets?

  4. Harold says:

    Activist Post?? Normally I would not even read anything with that heading.

    The 40% rate increase is irrelevant. What was the rate before the increase? Is it fair to insist someone else support you during your low production periods and then buy your excess production any time you have it, regardless of demand. Do they not realize that is masking one big reason the system is not normally practical, especially on the residential rooftop scale?

    If solar power has problems in the desert southwest, the land of endless sunshine, why would a credible (?) power company build a solar plant in Kentucky, the land of rainy skies and gales?—but they are! The answer is often found in government subsidies. If you want research really mucked up put a government subsidy on it.

    As for the consortium of casinos and businesses, my observation regarding solar (and wind) is the same as usual. If your local power company is so bad cut the cord—pull the meter and go it on your own. But first you had better check the cost of the battery bank you will need to tide you over the unproductive periods and the hardware required to charge it. Heaven forbid you would use diesel generators!

    This sounds to me like someone is miffed because his subsidy has been adjusted.

    • George B. says:

      At the end of the day, the peak power producer must be paid, and it can be an expensive business, to have on hand idle and expensive equipment, to roll it on a moment’s notice and cover the brown. Supply and demand has been the important foundation. When everyone wants to sell you an off peak KWH, it should be close to free, when there is no one wanting to sell that peak KWH, it must be lucrative for the producer to assure there will always be a supplier.

    • George B. says:

      Jerry, thanks for sharing this article. I think the efforts to compare the phone company with the power company are naive; but perhaps I have an advantage in understanding the difference having worked in that industry for nearly 30 years and having made the effort to study if from it’s inception. Some towns had three TELCOS, and none would interconnect, the wealthy had three phones so they could talk to everybody.

      Humans can rationalize anything, and the tenants of real science have always struggled to keep humanity honest. If everyone wants to sell, and there are few buyers, then the price should be low. When there’s peaks, and no one willing to sell, there’s trouble, and when it isn’t managed by people willing to leave people in the dark and/or cold, then serious equipment loss can be experienced. Telco doesn’t turn brown and doesn’t get hot with overloads, and load management is build in.

      The statement that the Tesla Battery is inexpensive…. really? How much for the battery to keep my AC on line through July nights in Vegas? I guess if it really is cheap, it’s the solution, just buy the battery, a few panels and kiss that nasty utility good bye! Power producers with huge economies of scale have an advantage, buying Billions of BTUs, or Billions in Equipment is always going to make it cheaper to produce a KWH.

      NV Energy should tell the Casinos, if you are the lowest cost power producer, we’ll gladly buy power from you. Ma Bell was all about subsidies, she made sure she screwed her customers on Long Distance and Business Lines so she could offer heavily subsidized basic service in areas where it cost a fortune to provide. ANYTIME you have subsidies, you leave a place for your competitors to attack you. NV energy is under attack, and they must make every effort to deliver a KWH at reasonable cost.

  5. BP says:

    >while reducing the amount they get paid for excess power sold to the grid.

    First of all that selling power back to the grid is based on a flawed theory then subsidized by congress. The potential of electrical pressure is so high on the primary 2.2KV or high of the Utility transformer it is impossible to push electrons back into the grid from residential solar systems.

    For subscriber side reverse energy flow to work properly it requires hanging a step up transformer onto the utility feed side while only a very small AWG drop to subscriber is required to return free solar energy back to the utility grid side. We then get benefit from 220VAC x 10 transformer ratio }}}}}}}}}}||{ 2200VAC grid side.

    That added transformer creates an protective barrier between subscriber and utility grid for energy to return on. Anything less is a fabrication, fiction, false truth and so many more cling words it is amazing not a single educated person has disputed that claim since they see the very special current meter running backwards surely energy is returned into the grid. Yet what is happening is current is only running backwards on the utility secondary. BTW that may not be so good for your neighbors electric bill if they are on that same transformer.

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