That is what I planned on finding out, but unfortunately getting through to some of the entities there was harder than I thought.
After reading about SolarCity I felt that the Solar Power market would now be open to small to mid-size companies. Maybe they would be able to capitalize on the news and start to market to their service;”We’re still here.” I went on line, typed in solar installers in Nevada. I printed out a list of about twenty companies operating in Nevada. I called eight that looked reputable, and didn’t get through to anyone. Not one. One company’s number led me to a little old lady; sorry Ma’am. Most of them had answering services; “for our directory press 1.” No wonder national companies are able to dominate the market, there’s no competition. And now the impression is that there’s no market at all. SolarCity’s announcement is dominating the discussion about Solar in Nevada. I was expecting to reach people that would be willing to discuss their plans to innovate, advertise, and fight for market share. I wanted to know whether their customers had questions, whether they even thought that the decision actually hurt the Nevada solar market. I also wanted to know whether or not there was a demographic that could still be marketed to, such as conservationist, empty-nesters, upper middle-class owners, green renovators, off-grid homeowners, farmers, and businesses. Tomorrow NV Energy is supposed to submit their rate plan for Net-metering, I’d be nice to hear from the industry, not just SolarCity, about their plans for 2016 under the new rate scheme. Stay tuned.
Berkshire Hathaway Energy, the holding company owned by famed investor Warren Buffett, is weighing in on the debate over how to compensate distributed generation.
In a strategy document written by SVP Brent Gale for a legal conference in July, Berkshire Hathaway Energy outlined its position on net metering, saying it should be scrapped in favor of a system that recognizes utility fixed-grid costs and utilizes distributed generation at times when it’s needed most.
via Warren Buffett’s Energy Company Says Net Metering Should Be ‘Eliminated’ : Greentech Media.
Distributed generation (DG) is the name given for generating power at the point of consumption. With DG, electricity is produced at many small, dispersed generating sites, rather than at large, centralized, traditional power plants. Some of the most recognizable distributed resources include solar, wind, and small gas turbines.
TVA: Bill Johnson.
“The goal is to develop methods for determining the full and fair value of distributed generation to the grid. The study also will identify methods for determining the full and fair value of the grid to homes and businesses that produce their own power.”
via TVA exploring distributed generation – Power Engineering.
Net metering — in which solar customers sell excess energy to the grid, getting credits for when they need to draw power from it, like at night — is under threat in some states and is an uncertain model that could render solar systems uneconomical, Goldman said.
With storage, however, consumers would no longer be tied to the grid and grid parity — the point at which solar energy costs roughly the same as power from the grid — is only a decade away in some states, Goldman said.
There is always some small “insignificant” detail, in every industry, that sits in the back of your mind when you’re selling a product. Just ask the automobile dealers at Toyota and General Motors. In the Residential Solar Market it would be the quality of the roof you’re proposing to place a solar array on. This is a good article that highlights that issue. While we certainly aren’t concerned about new construction or houses that have been built in the last decade or two, a great deal of new homes has been placed in the housing stock, we should worry about older stock. We’ve been inundated with wet and icy weather, leading to a more rapid decay of facades and roofs, buildings are literally falling apart in some areas. The condition of roofs plays into the process, from proposal to contract, to commissioning. That is why we see roofing contractors entering the market as installers, or solar companies partnering. As the industry expands, and consumer look to the Jones, roof condition and quality will become more important, and maybe impact the final decision to have an installation.
Prospective solar customers have had to endure delays and a lot of bureaucratic run around to install solar power, but municipalities are finally easing some of the back log. Do you have any stories about delays or rejections you’ve experienced trying to have your solar system installed?
Power generation, currently, is equivalent to rubbing two sticks together. We need to start viewing it as a technology, because more and more the electricity demand will come from technology – smartphones, smart TV, smart appliances, and smart cars, leading to a mature smart grid that will regulate how hard we run those two sticks together.
Communication companies can teach the electric utilities a thing or two about attacking a declining customer base: separate entities for residential and commercial.
Note to come as I research this theory.
“Utilities had been willing to pay more because many states, including California, require them to derive a significant percentage of their power from renewable energy sources. But now utilities in many states are on track to meet those requirements, giving them less incentive to buy higher-priced solar energy —especially as a steep decline in natural gas prices has cut the cost of power from gas-fired generators.”
Is this also the reason that Utilities are pushing back against residential Solar Systems?
via After a building boom, solar energys prospects now arent as sunny – latimes.com.