Does this apply to everyone?
I wonder if the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio and Prince Harry will be switching their A/C up to 25 deg and not charging their cars to take them to their private jets or yachts, or does this just apply to the peons?
One week after announcing plans to phase out autos powered by gasoline, California energy authorities are facing a heat wave so severe residents are being asked not to charge their electric vehicles during "flex alerts" designed to reduce stress on the grid. According to a heat bulletin [PDF] issued by the California …
Yeah very true. I was more meaning that the likes of Harry and Leo will expect others to do this kind of thing voluntarily, whilst doing no such thing themselves. Because they are mega rich, so why should they suffer small amounts of discomfort or inconvenience?
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As a result of which, a Casio watch runs for literally years on a single non rechargeable battery and is able to do a number of limited, but useful jobs such as telling you the time & date, acting as an alarm clock, and also as a stopwatch/timer.
Meanwhile, a smartwatch might make it through the day on a charge while weighing several times as much, provided that you don't actually use it.
The temperature lags behind the sunshine. That's why the "peak" is 4pm to 9pm.
And not because that's the time when people are at home after work, doing stuff under A/C while utilizing multiple electric appliances for various things they need/want to do, and, incidentally, charging the batteries of their EVs, depleted after a trip to work and back?
I've lived in the US, including CA. It always struck me as odd how early people tend to call it a night and go to bed. 9PM does not sound unusual.
In the US, getting a Diesel to cover for network unreliability has been the done thing for decades. If you have that kind of money and need.
In the UK, the cost of running a diesel is VERY close to the point where it is more cost favourable than drawing power from mains. If you were to run on red-diesel (illegally) it would be cheaper in fact.
Root cause of recent stupid rises remains two failings at Ofgem. 1) the standing charge rise, and 2) commodity trading; where the price of renewables and nuke automatically tracks the price of gas (because why wouldn't you sell for the highest price possible to sell in a free market where demand outstrips supply?)
CfD is a guaranteed price for generation, so if re-sell price is less than agreed CfD level then the generator gets their income topped up. This is why Hinckley C's CFD threshold of £90/MWh is terrible value for consumers, while fantastic for EDF because they know they can produce for waaaaay less than that and get guaranteed revenue irrespective of the retail price.
Fiddling with this for windmills or nukes will not solve the disconnect in resale price being much higher than the cost of generation.
The government knows exactly what it is doing, funnelling the proceeds of these high bills to areas they (and their rich mates) have invested in personally rather than addressing consumer / voter / national need interest.
I did see the news that a review was underway; but somehow I doubt the political will will be there to act on recommendations in that area - because literally the entire UK energy market is built on ROCs and CFD games.
I am definitely not against green or nuke power on a technical level, but the failings of the market are in plain sight.
Highly recommend Prof. Dieter Helm's podcasts.
This is why Hinckley C's CFD threshold of £90/MWh is terrible value for consumers
If guaranteeing that Hinkley point C would be paid a minimum of £90/MWh in exchange for them building the reactor from private finance without the public spending a penny is "terrible" then how would you describe the current £420/MWh energy bills caused by the decommissioning of things that work in favour of renewables that don't generate anything, causing over half of our power to come from gas (whatever the price may be) or the lights go out?
Most people would be utterly fucking delighted if energy prices fell by more than 75%.
When the resell price is well below 90, they still get 90. That's a shit deal. While the price is high, CfD does nothing for consumers. Adding windmills to CfD does not fix the problem.
The lack of a link between generation cost and resale price is the failing, and there aren't many non-drastic ways to take that back under control.
Shutting down coal was on the cards 40 years ago, so get over it. We have to use something else. Nuke being the most obvious candidate. And 40 years of govt have delivered bugger all progress in this space.
When the price is higher than the CfD price then they pay the difference back to the government. What CfD does for customers is get them power stations. If the operators aren't guaranteed a price for the electricity they generate then they wouldn't build the power stations in the first place.
By not functioning whatsoever. Lots of people don't like the "alternative", including many of it's own notional supporters. Also, the impact of high prices beyond the media is yet to be seen, with the first direct debits due in the next 4 to 8 weeks on the new rates.
Combined with some interest rate rises there are going to be an awful lot of screwed property renters and/or those with high LTV mortgages.
The real killer though are small businesses, who even in moderately-sized operations are seeing monthly bills explode to levels where they simply cannot operate. High unemployment will surely follow bankruptcies.
Much of central Europe is in a similar boat. Still, many cling to the free market as some sort of panacea when it's clearly responsible for ludicrous short term fluctuations.
"Still, many cling to the free market as some sort of panacea when it's clearly responsible for ludicrous short term fluctuations."
How did any of your post come about due to free market? These problems and the increasingly difficult economic times are due to government intervention, not the free market.
I suspect that they would be the ones to do it, but others won't on the basis that "I wonder if the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio and Prince Harry will be...". The extreme cynicism people have towards this instead of just doing the right thing scuppers initiatives a lot.
Although, to be fair, I find this somewhat amusing (not in a funny way) given that California knows that they are a hot state, that everyone relies on air conditioning (and much of Southern California relying on exorbitant amounts of water to keep things green), and that electricity usage will go through the roof when you make people buy leccy cars and then experience a heatwave.
(El Reg seems to have joined the MAGA crowd in the US in turning this into some kind of critique of electric vehicles, environmentalism and so on.)
We're currently experiencing a heat wave where temperatures that would normally peak in the 80s are going well over 100F. People respond to this by turning on the air conditioning. A typical domestic unit consumes about 6Kw, or what you'd expect to use when charging a car in your garage (maybe more, maybe less). Added up over a large area this represents a large chunk of power. So the smart thing to do is charge your vehicle at night.
Its all common sense, really. All infrastructure has design limits so you learn to work within those limits rather than maxing everything out, hoping it holds together and then flailing around angrily when it breaks.
Incidentally, during one of these alerts (its the first we've had this year to my knowledge) our utility will pay me $2 per Kwh to adjust my A/C thermostat to reduce overall power use. This is free money for me because I keep our cool set point at their setting (even assuming the A/C is on which is isn't for most of the time).
Please don't bring MAGA into the conversation, because then all rational debate goes out the window and everything becomes political and polarised.
Perhaps Trump, even though he got most things wrong, is actually right about some things. About Germany being dependant on Russian oil and gas? Tick. About the WHO being directed by the Chinese government? Jury still out on that one, and probably it's the American government too (behind Trump's back) because the NIH were funding research in Wuhan, so probably best we don't look there. Move along nothing to see.
About climate change being a fake story from the Chinese government? (or however he described it?) Probably not. But perhaps it's a bit dumb to go all electrical whilst simultaneously shutting down the nuclear power plants? Or do you think the solar and wind are enough? It's the "Sunshine State" after all, so you should have plenty of solar? Probably one of the best sites on the whole planet!? Why would a heat wave matter if you're getting 10 hours of sunshine every day? Surely that's enough to power all the electric cars and A/C you could possibly want?
If you can't make it work in California, then perhaps we should have a grown up conversation about how we transition to renewables in a realistic timescale, without causing mass blackouts in one of the richest states in the richest country in the world.
Also, is it possible that the modellers have got it wrong and we're not in the "emergency" that some seem to think, and we've got a few decades to transition? It does appear that the IPCC models don't match reality, and global warming has kind of paused for the last 20 years, instead of going up in the way Al Gore scared us all shitless with. Or do you think we should full on panic, "just in case"?
Trump being right about a few things is no surprise. The amount of shit he babbles constantly is akin to a million monkeys with a million typewriters ... and about all it shows is similar to a stopped clock being right twice per day, but is otherwise pretty useless as a tool.
"climate scepticism doesn't make you a maga nutcase".
It does if you are wrong, and it does because you seem to be well prepared to be wrong and rather than being sceptical you seem to be be an optimist willing question facts we can measure and see for ourselves.
The price for being wrong is just too high.
And by the way air pollution is not good for us either, climate change or not.
We'll find out in a couple of hundred years time which is about the timescale the fortune tellers (aka climatologists) seem to work in.
We (as in sceptics) can find out sooner than that. Thing is, climate 'science' relies on predictions. So ice caps will melt, NY will be under 6m of seawater, storms will increase, Thermageddon will make everyone vanish in a puff of blue smoke. Paul Erlichs's infamous 'Population Bomb' actually said that. Along with a bunch of other predictions, all of which have been proven wrong by the passage of time.
But such is politics.
But 'climate' is roughly defined as 30yrs worth of weather. Pick a cool period as your baseline, and obviously you get an artificially accelerated trend. The planet has experienced unprecedented warming since the depths of the last Ice Age. Who knew? Or, because the objective behind global warming dogma is deindustrialisation, pick the period prior to the Industrial Revolution as your Utopia. That means there's very little reliable and representative global temperature measurements, but who needs accurate data when you're doing science? There's historical stuff, like why the French Revolution happened to show that the weather/climate around those times wasn't exactly great.
But such is politics.
So then you need a mechanism to monetise the weather. So good'ol CO2. Simple molecule, well understood, and Arrhenius and others came up with a plausible sounding 'greenhouse effect'. One of the first climate deniers was a chap by the name of Ångström, who challenged this theory in 1900. Thus kicking off 122 years of debate around ECS, or 'Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity'. So how much warming we could expect for how much CO2. So now we have superdooper coal-powered climate models making thousands of WAG. We also have 'better' surface and satellite measuring, so can compare model predictions to reality. If ECS is high, Thermageddon is more likely, if it's low, it's not a problem, and due to vegan food being made from mostly sunlight, water and CO2, arguably a good thing.
But many people are still in denial. Especially given we in the UK subsidise 'renewable' energy by around £14bn a year because 'renewables' will save the planet. Hence all the bollocks around 'Net Zero', which is currently collapsing the UK economy. And even if the UK achieves Net Zero, it will make no noticeable difference to either the UK, or global climate. Especially as developing countries like China, India etc are ignoring the 'science', and building lots of power stations.
But such is politics.
California's just a macro example of the madness of crowds. It has experts like Leo Di Caprio and some Windsor chappy telling us we must embrace poverty, whilst jetting around and enjoying their yachts. Cali also has Newsom, who's decided to ban ICEs, and mandate EVs. California's energy demand has grown along with it's population, and the EV mandate will massively increase Cali's electricity requirements. But it hasn't invested in anything close to the energy production needed to support either it's growth, or it's policies. So Cali is the land of the rolling blackouts and brownouts because the most advanced state in the world can't keep it's lights on.
But such is politics. Everyone must buy an EV to save the planet. Just don't try to use them when the weather's unfavourable. Oh, and if you install a 'smart' meter, you won't be able to, because they'll be remotely controlled. But then this is also the state that mandated low-flow toilets, and discovered that the low flow extends across the sewer system, and had to pump water and bleach into the network.
Germany "Shut up Trump, we know better than you, Russian gas is great thanks!" *ahem*
Sweden "Renewables rock, let's shut down our perfectly good reactors with years left on them" proceeds to fire up the 'reserve' oil power station, burning a measly 140 000 l oil / hour all summer.
Yeah politicians are smart sometimes...
and there I thought I was the only one who'd noticed that.
Something you may find amusing-
To claim that the climate has not undergone any natural change for almost 200 years is nonsense. Not a scrap of evidence can be submitted to back up this proposition, and it flies in the face of all climate science. The climate has changed on Earth since gas first made an appearance in the atmosphere. Climate Feedback’s claim is in fact a denial of climate change.
But then denying reality is common amongst dedicated followers of climate dogma. MWP? LIA? Lies! So sayeth our fact checkers. Which is getting to the point where something being 'fact checked' is pretty much a certainty that the 'checked' version is propaganda.
"If you can't make it work in California" California had brownouts and blackouts around 2002,2003 just due to shitty planning and organisation, there were no global catastrophes in those days on the scale we have now.
For all the money that's made there (by some people) Cali can be very thirdy-worldy sometimes, it is still part of America.
What the fuck do MAGA (Muppets Annoying Genuine Americans) have to do with intelligent people pointing and laughing at California's joke of an energy policy? Has anyone noticed the dams silting up yet? And now we're going to get another 5 years of Nuclear (in you FACE, Gavin!), but after that no more nukes (none even on the drawing board). But we're working on Wind! (Never mind that ALL of the good places for wind generation are already full.) And we'll have better batteries RealSoonNow! Honest! Really, We're Working On It! Etc. Etc. Etc. ... During the meanwhile, let's build another hundred or so natural gas plants to keep us going ...
I'm ever so happy that I told PG&E and the PUC to fuck off ... The idiots running things couldn't organize a piss-up in a winery.
The heatwave California is heading into (today through next Tuesday or Wednesday) is absolutely nothing new. It is normal, it happens every year. In fact, there are typically six to ten of them every year. It is the fifth so far this year. (I'm in Sonoma, California.)
"our utility will pay me $2 per Kwh to adjust my A/C thermostat to reduce overall power use."
So the more you use, the more the utility will pay you? That sounds kind of stupid ... Surely they can't be paying you according to how much you DON'T use ... Consider that you didn't use 450 GWh this afternoon, and you won't again tomorrow.
 Not only are there no new nuclear plants on the drawing board, as of 1975 it is actually ILLEGAL for an energy company to start planning a new one here in California. No shit! The mind absolutely boggles ...
[1[ Except the Coast ... but the California Coastal Commission will never allow wind plants on or near the coast. So there goes 850 x 40 to 100 miles or so of prime wind ...
> What the fuck do MAGA (Muppets Annoying Genuine Americans) have to do with intelligent people pointing and laughing at California's joke of an energy policy?
MAGA seems to mostly mean "Someone whose politics I disagree with", amplified every day through a well-oiled press machine over 5 years.
"MAGA seems to mostly mean "Someone whose politics I disagree with", amplified every day through a well-oiled press machine over 5 years."
Also it would be a stupid thing for democrats to railing against as they are not insulted as BBB (build back better). While Trump is associated with Make America Great Again for Biden its 'I did that' (and never in a good way).
> So the smart thing to do is charge your vehicle at night.
So you *do* agree with the article then:
>> asked not to charge their electric vehicles during "flex alerts" designed to reduce stress on the grid
>> Load on the electrical grid peaks between 4-9 pm, during which time CAISO said it may issue flex alerts urging Californians to reduce their electricity consumption.
By the time this got recylced through the usual echo chambers here the "at night" bit got dropped, it was just "Newsom says we should phase out non-hybrid cars by 2035" got changed to "Newsom says that we must use all electric cars but we can't charge them".
>Load on the electrical grid peaks between 4-9 pm, during which time CAISO said it may issue flex alerts urging Californians to reduce their electricity consumption.
There's another issued for tomorrow (2nd. September).
Our Nissan Leaf+ (212 miles EPA range rating, 250+ mines actual, and over 280 miles on ECO mode) allows us to set the charge start and end time. We usually start it around 11 PM (Washington State - near Puget Sound - things have usually started cooling down by then). Fully charged by about 6 AM. In serious emergencies I set the start time later and cut-off time for the charge well before things start to heat up, then do a minor charge the next night. Since a full charge for a Leaf + gives us close to two weeks normal driving in our county we have a lot of leeway on timing, and we use it. We can also do a round trip from near the Canadian border to Seattle Center on a single charge, with range to spare for almost a week of normal errand driving.
We use the Leaf for over 99% of our driving these days. Our 2011 Prius is brought out a couple of times a month to charge the secondary battery and for the very few really long trips that actually require gas assist. On the highway we still get over 55 mpg from the Prius. Once the Prius gets creaky (no sign of that so far) we'll have a decision to make - do we get a Prius Prime to tide us over to 2035 so we can use that for small local runs without gas, or do I hope for an Aptera with 1000 mile range goal. Which is WAY farther than our old asses can handle these days in a single run - that's the major range limiter for us.
I'm curious about your Prius MPG. You say 55mpg but over what distance and what breakdown of electric to petrol?
Mainly curious because my 2.0L diesel car averages 50mpg which is about 1/2 urban and 1/2 motorway speeds and I tend to travel about 80 miles per day. I'm still weighing up how viable is EV for me.
For many years, under previous management, this site was a mouthpiece for anthropogenic climate change deniers. I kept pointing out to them that their anti-science stance discredited everything else they wrote about, and my posts have been premoderated ever since. Hence I'm not surprised at the drift of this piece, but the overwhelming evidence that the climate is changing, as predicted by the increases in CO2 in the atmosphere, has sensibly led them to keep their politics off the page.
In 1982, Exxon’s own scientists accurately predicted the global warming that continuous burning of their products would cause, to within a margin of 20%, and those predictions were consistent with those made by mainstream climate scientists. So, what were you saying about un-testable models where the code and inputs are kept secret?
Believing in un-testable models where the code and inputs are kept secret is not science.
Actually.. They're not that secret, you just have to go look. If you do, you'll quickly spot the problem. Like most only run off a few carefully selected parameters, ie CO2 sensitivity. There may only be 5 or so parameters per cell, and the cells are generally fricking huge for global models. So don't really model terrain, boundary conditions etc. But much of that is by necessity, ie the more parameters and details added, the more complexity and computation required, especially as the models are meant to simulate decades of weather.
So it's basically GIGO, and glossed over by the climate industry's PR crew who just point out they run on really super computers, and therefore must be right.
Of course reality frequently disagrees. So there's a thing called 'reanalysis', which compares model predictions to observations. That's mostly under the auspices of CMIP, or Coupled Model Intercomparison Project that attempts to standardise model inputs, and compare results. So improves the ability to test models. Snag is there can be a tendency to 'adjust' reality, ie adjust historical temperature measurements to match the models. Oddly enough, that's generally meant cooling the past, so erasing things like the MWP or even the climate conditions around the US's Dust Bowl and depression era warming. Mainly because if history isn't corrected, CO2-driven climate dogma can't explain them.
Propagandists like the dear'ol Bbc don't like reality, and do love being shills for 'green interests', so you won't learn about any of the real debate there.. They'll just clutch on any old weather as 'proof' of global warming. Reality though is if models use a lower ECS/CO2 sensitivity parameter, models tend to reflect reality better. But then they also don't allow propagandists to scream how we're doomed! Doomed I tell you! because some model, in some run, came up with >2C warming.
This is also why there's increasing desperation to lock in crap like Net Zero now, before too many people notice that most of the dire predictions by the doomsday cultists haven't come true.
"was a mouthpiece for anthropogenic climate change deniers"?
I remember those years well, but I always took it to be a healthy rebuttal of the rampant climate change evangelism & politicism in the media that shouted so loudly the actual science was all too often ignored completely, and worse, abused.
Lewis Page's articles were often divisive and provocative, and the real message was frequently lost on some.
The thing is, we'd all love to get to a state where society is both sustainable worldwide, and, at the same time, just as comfortable as it is now (or better!). Unfortunately, this is not easy. I don't think anyone can reasonably disagree with that, on either side of the ideological divide.
Pointing out the bumps on that road is hardly "joining the MAGA crowd". And pretending those bumps don't exist is not going to make the road any smoother.
You do know even the foggy bits during the dry season get heatwaves into the 90's several times pretty much every year. Maybe one or two years a decade the foggy bits are all grey gloom but the rest, even the coastal cities, will hit the 90's and 100's at least once or twice in a dry season. And anywhere away from the coast, its 90's and 100's plus until the rainy season breaks.
Local brownouts have been a feature of high loads during heatwaves in California for as long as I can remember in some areas. Which is five decades by this stage. SoCal Edison were notorious for them back in the 80's and 90's but since then its mainly a PG&E thing. Depending on where you live.
When I did some digging on this subject of local load capacity issues all roads led back to the PUC or state / local government regulations or eco lawsuits. This is very different from load shedding after earthquakes and wildfires.
As for your 200c k/wh subsidy. Thats payed for by the rest of us utility customers. Who have to pay 35c plus per kwh for electricity that used to cost 10c kwh for many years. And if you dig through the deliberately obtuse PUC reports that's how much electricity would still cost if it were not for the huge cross subsidies for unreliable, sorry, "renewable" energy. The "temporary" almost doubling of the price of electricity in 2000 to pay for the DeReg Debacle has been doubled again to pay for the stupid fantasies of CARB and the clueless eco-idiots who support it politically. If Cal had the gen mix of 1995 it would still be paying 1995 prices. Around 10c a kWh.
As for EV's. Not only a huge waste of money and a massive misallocation of resources but a huge safety hazard after natural disasters. Just one EV fire will be enough to burn down a block or two after the next big earthquake. You will only need a few hundred EV's to burn down large parts of the city after the next Big One. I was here in 1989. I know what to expect. Where you? I aint going to be pretty.
Given California's large difference between peak and off-peak tariffs, almost everyone will already have their EV charging after 9pm (starting whenever the off peak rates begin)
The biggest electrical use consumers could affect during that window prior to 9pm is their AC, but that's unfortunately something people will be very reluctant to part with during a heat wave.
Hopefully that funky new type of AC that allows moving electrical use to off peak hours while still providing cooling during peak hours can make it to market, but that's not going to do anyone any good during the current heat wave.
My AC runs off the inverter. The inverter doesn't give a shit if the power comes from the PVs, the generator, or the battery.
However, for the most part we don't use the AC. The GSHP keeps the house at a nice, toasty 70F (21C) pretty much constantly. I expect the AC to kick in on Sunday, Monday & Tuesday, when it's supposed to be around 105F (40C).
Solar generation peaks in the middle of the day, cooling needs peak a few hours later - though if you aim your panels to the west you can shift that generation peak. But on an existing home you have limited choices as far as your roof's design, and possibly are also limited by trees.
They don't all charge at the same time, they are "smart" technology which can communicate with the utility and charge when the utility says to go ahead rather than a given time. The limiting factor isn't when the charging stops, it is when it is complete - i.e. do you leave the next day at 6am or 10am?
If I was designing such smart charging technology I'd have it prioritize the cars that need more charge to start earlier in the window, and spread out the ones that only need a little top up over the whole window.
Plus most people who live in a single family house (i.e. not an apartment) and own or want to own an electric car will probably also own or want to own solar panels. Add a battery to store power that can charge your car overnight and you won't need to worry about when you charge.
(Denver ABC7) – […] when thousands of Xcel customers in Colorado tried adjusting their thermostats Tuesday, they learned they had no control over the temperatures in their own homes.
[…] “I mean, it was 90 out, and it was right during the peak period,” Talarico said. “It was hot.” That’s when he saw a message on the thermostat stating the temperature was locked due to an “energy emergency.”
[…] Xcel confirmed to Contact Denver7 that 22,000 customers who had signed up for the Colorado AC Rewards program were locked out of their smart thermostats for hours on Tuesday. (read more)
Comrade Citizens, it is important that we support the needs of the energy collective. All good thinking citizens put the needs of the state ahead of their selfish desires.
This is where I point out we caught my roommates Nest in SoCal turning ON the air conditioning when no one was home because he left the themostat in some "eco" mode that let the power company control the thermostat. It overrode the default and program modes and turned it ON in the middle of the day when no one was home, running the bill up.
There is still a lot of snake oil getting pushed, and people being taken advantage of by the power companies, who I assure you, do not have your best interests at heart.
Here in Sonoma I have discovered that it is far more energy efficient to keep the place at a cool temperature constantly than it is to allow the place to warm up when I'm away, and then try to cool it back down when I return. Granted, I have very good insulation, but so should everyone else.
Instead of cooling the whole house a little, I find it is more energy efficient to heavily chill small cylindrical glass cooling pads, and consume the cold as required. Mexican cooling units are obviously better, being designed and rated for higher ambient temperatures.
I rent, as it will take approximately 15 years to save up the down payment for a 30 year mortgage before I retire in 20 years at 70, unless it's for a condo in which case I would not own the walls or roof in any case. That's mostly down to taxes and rent eating 2/3 of my income by themselves. Like so many I need some way to get to work in 105 degree heat, so I make the extravagant purchase of a vehicle about every 15 years so I can pay for the privilege of working all day to pay for the privilege of working tomorrow too.
Feel free to suggest it to my landlord/HOA, I'm sure they will raise my rent again and pocket the money instead of upgrading anything, just like the holes in the uninsulated common attic the rats get into, and the 70's era ac/heater core that I only run when I have company over.
I hear it's nice though, having your own four walls. Maybe one of the family will die in the heat wave and I can take over their loan... or maybe hit the gym once it cools off a bit, so I could fight one of the local homeless for a spot in the shade under an overpass. And I work in IT.
Life's full of great choices these days. Guess it's time to move on.
"Xcel confirmed to Contact Denver7 that 22,000 customers who had signed up for the Colorado AC Rewards program were locked out of their smart thermostats for hours on Tuesday"
So presumably, the smart people went down to their local hardware store and purchased a cheap chinesium thermostat (~$20) to replace the obviously b0rken-by-design so-called "smart" one, right?
figure out which pins to jump with a paperclip.
Residential wall Thermostats are stupid simple devices most of the time. Toss a solid state relay or two into the mix and out could even leave the BigBrother thermostat hooked up in parallel so it won't narc you for being disconnected. Won't reduce your meter reads and maybe not your bill, but cool you will be, and I suspect the Xcel software isn't that bright.
This ability is the entire point of "smart" meters.
There should be 22,000 people in Colorado who are entirely unsurprised that their centralised heating service is centrally controlled. The central control isn't the problem, it's the lies and deceit that were used to install it.
Personally I won't have one, because that's what choice is for.
People are always surprised when this is pointed out.
This is exactly why my energy provider can install one in my home over my rotting corpse.
My home. My choice. I already do everything I can to reasonably reduce consumption without freezing into an ice block or melting into a puddle of my own sweat. If the heating or AC is on, it's because it needs to be on.
This isn't progress. This is a total failure of energy policies.
I can't be the only one who thinks this is hilarious! As if they only just now learned what they gave up to get a discount. #disingenuous
The real story here is how "fine print" is becoming increasingly cumbersome to the point where maybe they really *were* surprised to discover what they gave up? Did they think they were getting a discount because Xcel are just so nice? And I circle back to... nobody could be that dumb. I think for a lot of people, their backup plan is to be outraged and demand access to something that they promised to give up?
Nope, I'm feeling maybe a little bit guilty, but it's still hilarious.
I do hope the costs are working out for putting power back on the grid. Currently I pay 27 p per kWh but if I put any back on the grid from my solar panels I only get about 4 p. I'd be really annoyed if I charged a car at 27p and they took the charge (with losses) and gave me 4 p per kWh. AND I had to pay to charge it up again. Currently I have to output over 10kWh just to cover the standing charge per day!
What Elon is fighting for in the US is for providers like you to be able to join the energy market and trade along with all the other producers - at market rates. So when demand is high, you'll get paid accordingly. An extreme example is what happened in Texas last year during the freeze. Power that would normally sell for $40-$60 MwH was going for the ERCOT market cap - $9,999 MwH. Now that's an extreme example likely (hopefully) never to be repeated, but I've been watching spot prices this summer and seeing peak times where power is going for $400-$800MwH, so there's money to be made if you're allowed to participate in the market.
With many dams and reservoirs across the world starting to run dry, i've been surprised that there hasn't been a large scale project to dig out as much as possible from the bottom to create extra water capacity.
A JCB with a scoop could move something like 2 square meters worth of dirt in a single go with the scoop on the front? Given the the average daily household usage is 350 litres makes you wonder how many houses worth of capacity could be generated with a dozen JCB's at the bottom of an empty reservoir in about 3 months.
Then I realised that it would require an almost inconceivable level of competence and advance planning to increase capacity to ensure that we can fill things up in the winter this year to have more water for next years summer.
"The top three conservation actions are to set thermostats to 78 degrees [25˚C] or higher, avoid using large appliances and charging electric vehicles, and turn off unnecessary lights"
That's four things, dunce. Surprised the eds didn't Sic that one..
Also, maybe mention why the residential users are the only ones being called out on for this stuff, and mention that those running their own renwables don't need to unplug their fridge and sweat in the dark eating spoiled bologna sandwiches.
Our chief weapon against climate change is setting thermostats to 78 degrees [25˚C] or higher!
...and not using large appliances! Our 2 weapons are setting thermostats and not using large appliances...
...and not charging electric vehicles! Our 3 weapons.......
.....I'll come in again
If you're thinking Hoover Dam style renewable - go have a look at the water table in the lake and tell me it's easily renewable. Vagrancies in weather patterns make it more of a hit/miss style since rain used to refill the storage pool (or lake behind the dam) requires a fair amount of luck with the weather providing rain in the correct location to refill it.
Pumped storage is an option, but I believe "hydroelectricity" in the context of the article doesn't consider pumped storage since that's a very low percentage option (not enough pumped-storage facilities available).
The real issue with hydropower long term is the water used to spin the turbines, it's the belligerent refusal to engage in sane long term water management. Those dams are empty because we have over commited the available water, and seem to think that 100% water utilization is fine and sane public policy.
In reality, when you insist on using every drop that falls or flows, you massively deplete the long term water cycle as nothing is replenished to offset what is take, used and lost.
It also gives people little reason to change their personal behavior when the water they give up just goes to industrial and agricultural users instead of being banked for future use. Worse if I spend $$ or $$$$ to install low flow everything, I just get slapped with another flat percentage cut the next year, and no longer have a simple means to reduce water use.
But that mess aside, you are right that hydropower can't provide a solution by itself, it's just one piece of a bigger, diverse energy grid. I think a bigger fight is reforms to both the grid and to water rights and distribution. If you can keep the power companies from blocking you, plant solar on the urban rooftops and use the power surplus to feed some desal to offset some of that urban water consumption. With the added bonus of making the cities less reliant on Colorado river water and one less voice at the table blocking other solutions. At scale, I can afford the extra cost as long as it isn't marked up four or five times between the plant and me.
Yes, we can, and are. It has only been recently that it makes sense for the average homeowner, at least from a TCO perspective.
The cost of admission is very high ... but once installed, you can pull the meter and ignore the grid for the rest of your life.
I'm projecting my setup will have paid for itself in about ten years (guessing at PG&E rate increases). After that, it'll have another 20 years of life in it with one battery swap, and possibly another 15 or so after that with another battery swap.
My costs were lower than yours might be ... When I rebuilt this house, I made provisions for a solar plant on the roof, including wire. And I did the installation myself, minimizing labo(u)r costs.
In the UK there's currently zero incentive for landlords to do anything at all - no benefit to installing any renewables (solar HW/PV) or even to improve insulation beyond the bare minimum required to rent it.
Your landlord gets a tax break to renew the kitchen or replace the gas boiler with another gas boiler, but nothing at all if they fit solar, a heat pump or any other energy efficiency improvements.
So everyone in rented accommodation is screwed.
To clarify things a little: repairs of existing infrastructure is an in-year tax-deductable cost; installing new anything is a capital gain, taxed if you ever sell it.
If you're careful, some "installing new" can be classed as repairs - single glazed windows falling out, replace with double glazing = repair; perfectly fine single glazed windows, replace with double glazing = capital gain.
There is a benefit, you can become your tenant's electricity supplier, buy your own meter and install it in-between the circuit breakers and the electricity company's meter, feed the solar in-between the two meters and you can charge the tenant for the solar power they consume. You can only charge them at the same rate as the electricity supplier charges as you are not allowed to profit from reselling electricity from a grid supplier.
I'm all in for electric cars mind you, they can be pretty awesome when you can find a charge point. But we are screwing this up in California. Or more accurately, we are being screwed by how this is being done in California.
PG&E, SocalEdison, and Newsome, the unholy trinity, are seeing to it that we are forced into a world of electric everything. At the same time the governor is allowing the utilities to block people from easily deploying their own solar, blocking the installation of gas service lines in whole buildings, blocking large scale solar projects on state and city buildings, and concentrating renewables into remote and consolidated locations that have no access to customers other than through the monopoly grid they operate. Their business model has been to drive up the rates by creating artificially constrained supply, and loading rate payers with endless fees, because every failed and overbudget project they saddle us with, drives up the value of the percentage cut they are allowed to add on top of those costs.
They have also made it common practice to kill hundreds, and cause billions of dollars of damage to the state by neglecting maintenance of the aging gas pipelines and electrical infrastructure until someone dies, or the are burns down. And when the industry was finally about to gets it's reckoning when PG&E was found liable for multiple wildfires, instead of letting PG&E go bankrupt and taking over the grid, Newsom gave them a fat bailout package in return for their generous support. Just like the high speed rail that he hated until the bag men showed up. Now we have a high speed fail rail that only serves the central valley.
Now we have a short sighted governor looking to green wash his legacy by forcing everyone onto a crippled and broken grid he could have fixed, but took a bribe to ignore. His plan is to eject from the state before the shit hits the fan, to play the same game at the nations level. My fellow americans, please do not vote for our resident glad handing nitwit. Or Nitwits, as we have been exporting a bunch of them. Garcetti and slick Tony were both terrible in LA, and keep failing upwards.
California has a bright electric future, but we needed to start the 10 year upgrade project years ago. PG&E's management and investors whole plan is to suck every dime out of the company and then run when the grid collapses, sticking the state and ratepayers with the damages. Socal Edison is running the same playbook, but 5 years behind. Neither is actually building the infrastructure needed to fully electrify the state, or maintaining the existing grid. Instead they are playing a game of chicken, forcing more grid use, blocking alternatives, and banking on another expensive bailout when they crash the state.
Don't give it to them. They've been handed enough. Leave access to the alternatives till the grid has a prayer of handling the load, and if they fold, let them take all their debt with them. Don't subsidize their risk taking with the taxpayers and ratepayers money. If their management negligently kills people, management and the shareholders should be on the hook, and if they can't pay, the state can take the grid in lieu of other payment.
"At the same time the governor is allowing the utilities to block people from easily deploying their own solar"
Not really. I had absolutely zero issues from the State or the PUC or PG&E when I installed mine. I even had quite a few tax incentives. Switching from the grid to my off-the-grid system consisted of having my insurance company inspect it, then literally throwing the switch, verifying that it was functional, and finally pulling PG&E's meter and calling them to come get their shit off my property.
"Now we have a high speed fail rail that only serves the central valley."
We don't even have that. The first leg is partially under construction. Partly, I say, because the numpties in charge haven't even secured 52 miles of the right-of-way as of yet. Hell of a way to run a railroad, that.
Most of the rest of yours is hyperbole, and I'm not in the mood.
 Here in California, the homeowner is responsible for everything after the meter. After PG&E took all their stuff away, I decided to keep the transfer switch (I had to pay for it, might as well use it!) and added a way to truck in a second genset, just in case I ever need to take my kit off-line for a few days.
One of the reasons for the neglect and decay is that many US towns and cities are broke. If you're interested then dig around Youtube for vids on "Why American Cities are Broke" by a channel called "Not Just Bikes". As a Brit the way that US town planning works was eye-opening and a little sad.
"News": sending electricity down aluminium wires (c.f.pylons) to consumers homes loses about 40% of the energy. So charging your cars' unrecyclable electric betteries from such an inefficient source has to be prevented! Hahahaha! Errrrm... Why not use a more efficient source of energy? E.g. burning fossil fuels in your petrol engine?
40% transmission loss is bollocks unless you can put up a source.
"The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that electricity transmission and distribution (T&D) losses equaled about 5% of the electricity transmitted and distributed in the United States in 2016 through 2020."
"Energy lost in transmission and distribution: About 6% – 2% in transmission and 4% in distribution – or 69 trillion Btus in the US"
As for "why not just burn fossil fuels".... because that causes climate change.
How ridiculous! Just a few days after Governor Noisome's dictate:
—● Quick, turn off your EV chargers, air conditioners, toothbrushes, vibrators...
—● Quick, emergency-override those environmental regulations...
What a prime example of the results of ongoing delusional, incompetent CA leadership elected by gimme-subsidy, "green"-virtued/-duped voters!
I am surprised that proponents of hydrogen-fueled clown cars are not out protesting Noisome's electric lies. The EV battery story alone is so obscenely "ungreen" that purists should be apoplectic. But, no, we must bury that story, for the greater, delusional good.
Now, I read posts by what sounds like wacko survivalists investing wealth — that no average joe has — to outfit home power generation. Are you insane? Oh, wait, you are at the end of your rope because of CA's incompetence. I understand, and I empathize.
Still, step back a moment. Successful societies build at scale resource-efficient, government-regulated utilities for power, water, etc. (and allow for self-supplied energy, wells, etc., as appropriate). If the government-regulated utilities are a problem, society is supposed to address those issues through government...not go out and dig millions of wells or plaster solar panels on every house.
One poster, clearly out of his mind, buys into the "emergency" of "climate change," like someone at a mall food court looking for a toilet. Jesus Christ, you need medication, not an EV.
The mad rush that some embrace is spinning out of control. Germany is now paying a price for its arrogance. Let us bathe in the Schadenfreude, as its Russian natural-gas supply dwindles and heating costs skyrocket. Deutschland, to the world, you virtue-signaled "Nicht wiedersehen!" to nuclear and fossil fuels, and now you are going to pay for your Commie love and "green" stupidity.
The same goes for CA, but it will not be cut off by Russia. Biden's boondoggle billions will fill California's craved subsidy syringe.
California is to the rest of the nation the same as its spaced-out, money-draining San Franciscan drug addict who wants government to watch over him with free, taxpayer-funded shoot-up locations; free, taxpayer-funded syringes; free, taxpayer-funded NARCAN; and free, taxpayer-funded dope, if possible.
It is about time that the rest of the U.S. demand some tough love for CA.
If I understand the concept of V2G, cars serve as energy sources. Does that mean one could be unable to go home because his/her EV was discharged because of high demand?
but a lack of battery capacity in the state means that much of that energy vanishes with the sun
Use this energy to produce hydrogen. Building hydrogen-compatible tanks doesn't require all the dirty materials used to produce batteries.
"If I understand the concept of V2G, cars serve as energy sources. Does that mean one could be unable to go home because his/her EV was discharged because of high demand?"
No, because with the EVs that are capable of V2G you control (the EV owner) control how much you want to be able to discharge. So you could say once battery drops below 70% then stop V2G.
Just a side note, I follow a lot of EV news and the aren't that many V2G enabled EVs yet. Not sure why that is, possibly it's a bit more expensive to develop/install for the manufacturer?
V2G is only going to be accepted if the utility company pays a LOT for electricity so provided.
Nobody is going to buy electricity at 25-40c/kWh, store it in their car battery then sell it back at 4c/kWh. That would be insane!
Every charge/discharge cycle wears the cells a little, so even if you've got solar PV or wind on your property, you aren't going to store excess in your car to sell later at the same price. You'll sell it instantly at the 4c and save the battery life.
So the only way V2G can ever work is if EV car owners are paid a LOT for their storage. Probably at least double what they pay to charge the vehicle.
Which immediately raises serious questions about viability. I suspect it is not in fact viable at all.
Hydrogen releases much less energy per gram than hydrocarbons like natural gas, and is far less dense. It also won't pool on the ground, it goes up fast so is much easier to get rid of.
So it's far safer than a similar amount of energy as LNG or similar.
However, it does leak more easily than LNG etc, so the losses are much higher.
HA HAA, HA HAA, HA!
Californians already can't keep up, they won't allow new generation, they're ditching fossil fuel generation, and they plan to add more than 30 percent of a load to their grid. Actually, more like 60 percent seeing as they're also banning natural gas appliances and likely fireplaces and wood burning stoves to all new builds. Electricity only. I guess they think they can legislate greenwashed technology into existence. Gonna have to build more nukes, it's the only carbon neutral power around that can carry the load.
And the bit about using people's EV batteries as backup power? How much battery lifespan will that kill for the battery's owner? And what's the exchange rate? Knowing the power company, they'll charge 4 times more to put the power into the EV battery than they'll pay to take it out. NEMA 3.0 has already taken any payback out of a new solar installation now that solar installations are mandatory on new builds.
I don't know the actual power consumption figures for a complete system, but the numbers for individual PC components look rather high. Intel's latest "enhtusiast" processors, the Core i9 12000 series, are rated at 241W. The "most efficient processors ever" from AMD, the Ryzen 7000 series, are rated as high as 170W. Video cards are routinely rated at 200-300W apiece. 1500W power supplies are becoming common, when I used to think 1000W units were impressive. I decided years ago I don't want a PC that expels as much heat as a small space heater. I can't imagine the extra air conditioning and electricity necessitated by all of the computing equipment people are using. Would it be appropritate to discuss their impact on the grid?
Valve amplifiers often have two switches - off/on and standby/on. The on/off just switches the mains to the power supply. In standby position the PSU only powers the valve heaters. Flipping the standby switch to on turns on the HV to the valves as well.
As a callow youth buying my first real six string - and amp - I was told always to use the standby switch when turning on because it protected the output valves or the output transformer or the speakers or the giant mutant star goat or something. As I started playing I used it as just a handy switch so you could do the sound check, turn the amp off but leave the valves running so the amp came up as soon as you ran on to the stage to thunderous applause avoiding an embarrassed wait and shouts cross-stage of "are you on yet?". Over the years I've heard tales about it protecting the HV PSU from big spikes due to the reactance of cold valves which would blow the regulators/capacitiors/inductors/fuses, etc. The fact that some valve amps don't have standby switches might mean this is all bollocks or it might mean they have different designs.
I've owned a lot of valve amps with and without standby switches and with and without using the standby switch "properly" I've never had one blow up.
"A poorly timed heatwave"
Really? So now its the fault of the weather not the lack of preparedness pointed out in this delusional green madness? There is little satisfaction in keep saying 'I told you so' but yet the stupidity continues ever onward-
"California Air Resources Board (CARB) passed a package of regulations that called for the state to phase out the sale of new internal-combustion vehicles by 2035."
Not elected officials.
Not a referendum.
Not a law approved by voters.
A bunch of unelected bureaucrats decided on forcing everyone to buy different vehicles.