Date   

Re: Need Electrician recommendation to install Level 2 EV charging station

 

Independent Green Technologies of Texas (solar installer) can do this for you.
682-593-1136

On Wed, Nov 24, 2021 at 10:54 AM Jim Cochran <jimcochran.jd@...> wrote:
Good Faith Energy who was the installers for my solar panels in 2020 can recommend an electrician which they did for me for general electrical work I needed at the house

you can call them and they will probably recommend to you someone who will be more expertise in the EV fields then just a regular Electrician. phone number is 469-209-5910

Good faith Energy did a very expert job on my solar panels and they also advised me to switch to Rythm energy from Green Mountain when they first were made aware of the changes that were coming to the surplus electricity so I have a lot of faith in their recommendations







--
Tom Chentnik
Independent Green Technologies of Texas, LLC


Re: Need Electrician recommendation to install Level 2 EV charging station

Jim Cochran
 

Good Faith Energy who was the installers for my solar panels in 2020 can recommend an electrician which they did for me for general electrical work I needed at the house

you can call them and they will probably recommend to you someone who will be more expertise in the EV fields then just a regular Electrician. phone number is 469-209-5910

Good faith Energy did a very expert job on my solar panels and they also advised me to switch to Rythm energy from Green Mountain when they first were made aware of the changes that were coming to the surplus electricity so I have a lot of faith in their recommendations


Need Electrician recommendation to install Level 2 EV charging station

Larry
 

I have a good friend who lives near downtown Dallas looking for an electrician to help with selection and installation of a level 2 EV charging station.  Anyone have recommendations?
 
Thanks and Shine On!
Larry Howe


"It was a Cold Week in Texas (Texas Grid near Blackout)"

Skip Cave
 

IEEE Meeting on Texas Grid Failure...

Skip

Skip Cave
Cave Consulting LLC


---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: IEEE eNotice <enotice@...>
Date: Tue, Nov 23, 2021 at 6:56 PM
Subject: "It was a Cold Week in Texas (Texas Grid near Blackout)"
To: <skip@...>


If you are having trouble reading this message, click here for the web version.

 

To view complete details for this event, click here to view the announcement

"It was a Cold Week in Texas (Texas Grid near Blackout)"


The presentation will discuss the events as they unfolded during the Texas Grid power events from the perspective of the Office of North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) Compliance with Certrec.  This presentation is based on actual events and recorded data during the period of the event. 

Date and Time

  • Date: 08 Dec 2021
  • Time: 06:00 PM to 07:00 PM
  • All times are US/Central
  • Add_To_Calendar_iconAdd Event to Calendar

Location

Edward Rafter, PE, CxAP is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Join Zoom Meeting

https://gbateam.zoom.us/j/95503917006?pwd=Mm05dnFHREFuek5BZWhTbG5WZkttZz09

Meeting ID: 955 0391 7006

Passcode: 209828

One tap mobile

+16699006833,,95503917006# US (San Jose)

+19292056099,,95503917006# US (New York)

Dial by your location

        +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)

        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

Meeting ID: 955 0391 7006

Find your local number: https://gbateam.zoom.us/u/ada6US25zA

Hosts

Registration

  • Starts 19 November 2021 08:00 AM
  • Ends 07 December 2021 08:00 AM
  • All times are US/Central
  • No Admission Charge

Speakers

Evans Heacock

Evans Heacock of Certrec

 

Topic:

It was a Cold Week in Texas (Texas Grid Near Blackout)




Kansas City Section Affinity Group,LM
Kansas City Section : https://ieee-kc.org/
Dallas Section Affinity Group,LM
Kansas City Section Chapter, PE31/IA34 : https://webinabox.vtools.ieee.org/wibp_home/index/CH05052
Pikes Peak Section Affinity Group,LM

Manage your IEEE Communication Preferences at the IEEE Privacy Portal


Home Battery Purchase Subsidy

Mark Witte
 

I love this program by Green Mountain Power in Vermont (not to be mistaken for Green Mountain Energy). It would be great if electricity providers in Texas had a similar program. 

Mark


Continuing Solar PV Cost Declines

Mark Witte
 

I'm forwarding a link to a recent article about solar PV cost declines from PV Magazine. Interestingly, the entire installed cost for utility scale solar is less than just the soft costs for residential PV. The cost declines are also much greater for utility scale and commercial rooftop than residential. 



Mark


And Now For Something Different: The Sunion Interview

 

Exclusive interview: 2022 predictions from The Sunion, cleantech’s answer to The Onion:

https://www.canarymedia.com/articles/fun-stuff/exclusive-interview-2022-predictions-from-the-sunion-cleantechs-answer-to-the-onion 

https://www.thesunion.com/ 

"f you work in the renewable energy industry and you appreciate the humor of The Onion, I’ve got a special treat for you. It’s called The Sunion.
 
I know, I know; I had the same initial groan-like reaction. But it’s good, I promise!
 
The Sunion’s website describes itself as ​“a collaborative side project of a few industry folks who require humor and laughter to tolerate this strange, frustrating, wonderful industry.” It goes on: ​“This is done in the spirit of making fun of one’s self: Though some of the ideas may be spurred by observations of other industry folks’ silliness, the majority of the content is derived from our own past mistakes, absurd internal dialogue, or awful ideas quickly pivoted into satire.”
 
A few amusing headlines follow:
 
Guy Who Just Googled ​“Reactive Power” Now Condescendingly Explaining It to You
 
Reclaimed Conference Table PV: Solution to the Supply Chain Crisis?
 
Endangered Shrike Willing to ​“Work Things Out” for 6% of Project Equity"...........


Solar-powered harvesters could produce clean water for one billion people

 

From the Nov 13 Physics World:

One billion people could access safe drinking water using devices that use solar energy to condense water from the air. That is the conclusion of a team of researchers in the US led by Jackson Lord at X, The Moonshot Factory, who have developed a new tool for assessing the global potential for water harvesting. Their tool could soon help researchers to design completely off-grid water sources, suitable for use in local communities in many parts of the Global South.

The lack of access to safely managed drinking water now affects some 2.2 billion people worldwide. Addressing this serious problem using existing technologies is a key part of the United Nation’s sustainable development goals – with the organization declaring that everyone should have access to five litres of safe drinking water every day.

This could be achieved in some regions using atmospheric water harvesters (AWHs), which draw clean liquid water out of humid air. There are several different types of AWH, and Lord and colleagues focused on the solar-driven, continuous-mode AWH (SC-AWH). In such a device, heat from sunlight drives warm, humid air through a heat exchanger where it cools and releases water via condensation. Because a SC-AWH operates during the day when relative humidity tends to be low, it has a low efficiency and it had not been clear which locations worldwide are suited for its use.

More at this URL. You might need to create a free account to read the article:
https://physicsworld.com/a/solar-powered-harvesters-could-produce-clean-water-for-one-billion-people/


Re: NBC 5 Investigates the Texas Electric Crisis

Jack Smith
 

The Texas Railroad Commission put a $150 dollar loophole in the latest law pass last session. They (gas companies) don't even have to explain why.

It could be worse, our neighbors to the south (Mexico's president AMLO) are trying to nationalize the grid and drive out low carbon energy. I suspect Mexico is using the immigration crisis at our boarders to distract attention from the more radical stuff they are doing internally. I would be wary of them. They are one of our largest trading partners.

https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2021-11-17/biden-amlo-energy-migration-white-house-summit


2021 Green Source DFW Sustainable Leadership Awards via Zoom: Thu Nov 18, 6 – 8:30pm

 

Celebrate North Texas environmental heroes by tuning into the 10th annual Green Source DFW Sustainable Leadership Awards online. The annual green awards gala, hosted by Green Source DFW and its parent nonprofit the Memnosyne Institute, will be held virtually for the second year due to the pandemic, and is free to attend!

Zoom link:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89938890605

Emcees will be Wendel Withrow, Green Source DFW director, and Victoria Howard.

Keynote speaker is Fort Worth native Lance Tahmahkera, the Great-Great Grandson of Comanche Chief Quanah Parker: see article:
“Quanah Parker descendant to speak at Green Source Awards”:
https://greensourcedfw.org/articles/quanah-parker-descendant-speak-green-source-awards

The following green heroes will be honored:
- Conservation Activist: Marcie Haley
- Environmental Justice: Tiara Chapman, Outdoor Afro Dallas
- Green Project: Trinity Coalition, Trinity River National Water Trail
- Coke Buchanan Volunteer of the Year: Victoria Howard
- Next Generation: Sahan Yerram
- Environmental Reporting: Haley Samsel
- Unsung Hero: Bob Mione
- Lifetime Achievement, Posthumously: Kevin Sloan

More about the winners:
“Winners announced for 2021 Green Source DFW Awards”
https://greensourcedfw.org/articles/winners-announced-2021-green-source-dfw-awards

Info: GSDFW editor Julie Thibodeaux at Julie@....

Event Website:
https://www.facebook.com/events/1471389053248177


The Most Optimistic Climate Chat You'll Hear This Year

Philip Timmons
 



Topic:  The Most Optimistic Climate Chat You'll Hear This Year

Description:  Renowned and recognized for his decades of climate activism and leadership, Bill McKibben is just back from the COP26 global climate summit in Glasgow -- so he's got pressing questions for Saul Griffith, the author of the new book Electrify! An Optimist's Playbook for Our Clean Energy Future. Kirkus Reviews calls the book "surprisingly optimistic, realistic, and persuasive," and Nature says the book "demands attention." Hear why Saul's optimistic, he'll cheer up Bill, and how Saul's nonprofit Rewiring America is working to make electrification a priority for Congress right now.

Time:  Nov 17, 2021 05:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)



Re: The all-electric future (NPR Marketplace Nov 15)

Molly
 

Bill,
Thanks for the details and webcam link. Wishing you the best on construction, etc.. I look forward to seeing it when it's complete.
Molly

On Tuesday, November 16, 2021, 3:42:51 PM CST, Bill Byrom via groups.io <bill@...> wrote:


Molly, the house is in Irving and nearly under construction, as we are still preparing to start the foundation. I demolished my old house on August 10 - it had problems - and I’m living across the street in a rental house. You can follow the new house construction project visually on my webcam at:

That webcam is aimed north from the rental house at my construction site. It’s one block south of Hwy 183, about halfway between the center of DFW Airport and Love Field. The vehicles past the trees on the left side of the image are on MacArthur Blvd, a major north/south thoroughfare which starts around I-30 in Grand Prairie and runs though Irving, the Los Colinas and Valley Ranch Irving development areas, Coppell, and ends at Round Grove Road in Lewisville. The Baylor Scott & White hospital in Irving is across the street at the left of the cam image.

The project is going slow now. The only thing going on so far this week was the soil testing drilling truck visit around noon today to take two soil core samples. Over the past 5 weeks (due to rain delays) there have been two rounds of soil stabilization chemical injections. The first round failed to meet the engineering requirements, so the equipment had to be brought back in for a second round. We needed a string of several dry sunny days so it wasn’t muddy. 

In addition to supply chain issues, the construction industry locally is very busy right now. I started the house design process in February 2020, and I’m sure it won’t be completed in two years by February 2022. Demand is high on building materials, appliances, and labor. 

Bill


On Tue, Nov 16, 2021, at 8:35 AM, Molly wrote:

Bill, 
Your new house sounds great and like one we need to have on the DFW Solar Tour!  In what city is it located?
Thanks,
Molly Rooke

On Monday, November 15, 2021, 07:40:40 PM CST, Bill Byrom via groups.io <bill@...> wrote:


I just listened to this on the radio (KERA-FM locally) and you can listen online at:
Choose the Nov 15, 2021, episode. The piece about our all-electric future (with a real example in New Orleans) runs from 4:00 - 9:30.

The future sounds similar to the new house I'm building. I'm working with Michael Fladmark and Dan Lepinski on the solar panels, grid-tied inverter with off-grid capability, and a LFP (lithium iron phosphate) battery. I'm installing a GSHP (Ground Source Heat Pump) as described in the Marketplace episode. I wish they had also discussed energy efficient appliances (Energy Star and beyond) and energy efficient building techniques. Of course, there will be EV chargers in the garage.

I also need to eventually move to a full EV. Currently I own a 2020 Ford Fusion Energi 4-door PHEV with about 20-25 miles round-trip range (usually sufficient for my daily trips as a retired person) and of course it's also a hybrid vehicle with great gas mileage. But it has a tiny trunk, suitable for my backpack or one suitcase with not too much else, due to the HV batteries beneath and behind the rear seats. I also own a conventional ICE vehicle (2016 Dodge Caravan) which I purchased for a very good price from my employer when I retired and is good for moving big stuff. What I will be looking for in a few years is a medium sized SUV full EV with better range than most current EV models, which Ford (and GM) are moving toward this decade.
 


Re: Fw: November Letter to the Editor Opportunity9

Jay Squyres
 

Mark,

I am in time-critical transportation and tell my dispatchers I want ALL power Grid deliveries.  Engineers are only TOO HAPPY to speak their minds.  I visit Solar, Wind, Coal, Natural Gas, & Nuclear plants.  Every single one of them hates ERCOT.

I think the problem is elsewhere (ERCOT.)  I am only speaking from what I am told from the people working at these plants.

It is amazing, the largest Bambi killers (driving late at nite, avoiding deer,) is going to our Nuke plant.  It is literally Bambi Pinball.

My opinion from what I see/hear.  And Yes.  I am a hard-core Solar & Wind advocate.


PS.  Amazon & UPS are 2 of my best customer's. UPS has 12 planes that land at DFW nightly, 3 are from China.
Amazon has 16, 21 by February, all Domestic arriving at Alliance for us Prime members.  All busy during the day till you gotta replace a Jet Engine - like this one.

 SUPPORT AMERICAN!



Sent from my Sprint Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G.


-------- Original message --------
From: Mark Witte <witte.m@...>
Date: 11/16/21 7:10 PM (GMT-06:00)
To: NTREG Main Group <main@ntreg.groups.io>
Subject: [NTREG] Fw: November Letter to the Editor Opportunity

All,

I'm forwarding an email from Solar United Neighbors, for anyone who might want to write a letter to the editor in support of solar energy.  

I also wanted to discuss the general topic in the email of increasing Texas electricity rates. Considering the ever decreasing costs for solar and wind, shouldn't electricity from renewable generators / providers be decreasing? I understand those companies can make higher profits if they raise their rates like the fossil fuel companies. But it seems they are missing a golden opportunity to grab more market share and demonstrate to existing and prospective customers that renewably generated electricity really is the only way to be protected against rate increases. 

Short term profits over long term strategy isn't smart. 

Mark 


----- Forwarded Message -----
From: Lisa Trope <ltrope@...>
To: "sun-tx-lte@..." <sun-tx-lte@...>
Sent: Tuesday, November 16, 2021, 04:54:47 PM CST
Subject: November Letter to the Editor Opportunity

Hello everyone,

We hope you are having a nice fall! We wanted to share this month's opportunity to write a Letter to the Editor in support of solar energy. Please let us know if you draft and submit a letter! Below is an opinion piece published in The Dallas Morning News, “I looked at the latest electricity prices in Texas and got a shock.  "You can also find the text pasted below my signature. 

Below are a few “talking points” you could consider including in your letter to the editor. Please be sure to write the letter in your own words. 

  • February’s deadly freeze—and today’s soaring energy bills—show Texas is too dependent on unreliable gas plants. Instead, Texas should drive the energy transition by doubling down on our clean energy leadership.

  • Texas renewable energy can support resiliency and reliability.

Submission instructions


Here is the link to where you can submit your letter to The Dallas Morning News.

The letter must be under 200 words to be considered for publication. 

If you’re able to send in a letter in the next two days, great! Let us know. If not, no worries. There will be another opportunity to write soon.

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns or if you want us to review your letter before submitting.  Thanks for making helping promote a clean, just, and equitable energy future in Texas with rooftop solar as the cornerstone!

Best, 

Lisa 

--

Lisa Trope
Engagement Specialist
Solar United Neighbors

 

 

Have you looked at retail electricity prices lately?

On the suggestion of readers, I pulled up the state-sponsored marketing site — PowerToChoose.org (beware of imitators) — and it was like I stuck my finger in a wall socket. I was shocked.

For as long as The Watchdog can remember, the opening pages usually highlighted kilowatt hour rates of around 6 to 9 cents.

Now the opening pages show double-digit pricing of 10 cents or more.

Prices of the two dominant players in the market — TXU Energy and Reliant Energy — offer an added jolt.

TXU shows one-year plans for 1,000 kWh around 12 cents. Another listed plan offers a 15.9 cents rate.

On the TXU website, I saw different plans that varied from those presented on the state website. A reminder that with all companies, always remember to check both PowerToChoose and that company’s website.

Reliant shows plans on the state site from 13.4 cents to 15.2 cents for various kWh usage.

This chart by TexasElectricityRatings.com shows the cost of electricity in Texas from 2016 to Oct. 2021. It shows the average rate for 12-month electricity plans, which is what many customers choose.

This chart by TexasElectricityRatings.com shows the cost of electricity in Texas from 2016 to Oct. 2021. It shows the average rate for 12-month electricity plans, which is what many customers choose.(TexasElectricityRatings.com)

Oncor rate spikes

Another charge, the so-called Oncor charge for transmission to retail companies, jumped 19% in September. That means the mandatory fee for each kWh used grew from about 3.5 cents to 4.15 cents. That’s the first time I can remember the Oncor charge crashing the 4 cents a kWh barrier.

To compute your bill, if you use 1,000 kWh a month, multiply 1,000 times 4.15 cents. Then multiply 1,000 kWh by the retail rate you contracted to pay. Add the two together for total kWh fee. And don’t forget to add Oncor’s $3.42 monthly base charge on all bills on top of that.

Oncor tells The Watchdog the 19% increase, approved by the Public Utility Commission, is to help cover the cost of added equipment to handle North Texas’ growth.

Thanks to readers Jerome Giambalvo of Coppell, Doug Archer of Dallas and Phil Caron of Fort Worth for alerting The Watchdog about this.

Why such high prices?

What do Texas experts say about these price jumps?

Ed Hirs, an energy fellow at the University of Houston, says the banning of Griddy, which sold power at wholesale prices, removed a major incentive for retailers to keep their prices down to compete.

He says the increase in natural gas prices we’re seeing is another cause because many Texas power plants run on gas. He blames hurricanes which struck the Gulf of Mexico.

He also blames the Texas government’s bailout allowing companies to recoup billions of lost dollars during the horrific February freezeout through the purchase of $6.5 billion in bonds. Those costs will be passed on to consumers.

When the Texas Legislature sided with companies over consumers, he said, “You know the game is fixed.”

Beth Garza, who served until 2019 as the independent monitor of grid operator ERCOT, said companies selling one-year contracts must anticipate higher prices expected to increase during the length of those contracts.

James Boyle, who once led Texas’ Office of Public Utility Counsel, said: “We all know that what happened in the legislative session is that everybody was taken care of except the home folks. And the consumer pays for everybody else’s mistakes. I think that’s reflected in those prices.”

Kelso King, who runs King Energy Consulting and monitors all Public Utility Commission meetings, warns that still to come is the pass-through to consumers of the multi-billion-dollar bailout for energy companies. That was the solution approved by lawmakers and Gov. Greg Abbott.

King added, “For decades, policymakers kept saying that the great thing about a competitive market was that all of the risks would be borne by generators instead of ratepayers. But when it came down to it, unsurprisingly, end use customers were left holding the bag.”

Buy electricity in Texas

Here are some shopping tips from citizens of my Watchdog Nation.

Judy Ruby-Brown of Coppell was skeptical of Texas Power Switch, which works through cities, mostly, to buy electricity in bulk discount. When I assured her it’s a solid program, she ran the numbers, comparing other companies to it, and declared it the “real deal.” She still predicts she’ll spend $300 more on electricity than she did last year.

Nancy Upson of Dallas discovered one of the dirty secrets: If you buy a 1,000 kWh plan and your usage is above or below that exact amount each month, your rate skyrockets. She says consumers must strive to hit the mark, even if it is wasteful. This applies to 500 kWh and 2,000 kWh plans, too.

Dick Bunting of Bonham discovered that some companies that appear at the top of PowerToChoose.org with supposed low rates charge a $14.99 setup fee.

“Wonder how many folks have been fooled by this,” he asks.

Pam King of Houston says to be wary of outside consultants. Check their reviews and also electricity company reviews, too. Watch out for bait and switch, she says.

A retail company may try to sell you a different plan than the one you want. She says, “They’ll tell you it’s cheaper or has some sort of perk. One company tried to sell me a plan with an air conditioning maintenance contract included.”

She filed a complaint with the PUC on her current provider for charging the wrong transmission fee.

“I’m not the crazy one,” she concluded. “It’s the whole dysfunctional system.”

Amen.




Learn how it's possible for 1 in 4 Americans to go solar!

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NBC 5 Investigates the Texas Electric Crisis

Skip Cave
 

Powerless: NBC 5 Investigates the Texas Electric Crisis

In “Powerless,” NBC 5 Investigates reveals the causes of Texas’ massive February 2021 power crisis that led to 150 deaths and caused more than $100 billion in damage.




Skip Cave
Cave Consulting LLC


Fw: November Letter to the Editor Opportunity

Mark Witte
 

All,

I'm forwarding an email from Solar United Neighbors, for anyone who might want to write a letter to the editor in support of solar energy.  

I also wanted to discuss the general topic in the email of increasing Texas electricity rates. Considering the ever decreasing costs for solar and wind, shouldn't electricity from renewable generators / providers be decreasing? I understand those companies can make higher profits if they raise their rates like the fossil fuel companies. But it seems they are missing a golden opportunity to grab more market share and demonstrate to existing and prospective customers that renewably generated electricity really is the only way to be protected against rate increases. 

Short term profits over long term strategy isn't smart. 

Mark 


----- Forwarded Message -----

From: Lisa Trope <ltrope@...>
To: "sun-tx-lte@..." <sun-tx-lte@...>
Sent: Tuesday, November 16, 2021, 04:54:47 PM CST
Subject: November Letter to the Editor Opportunity

Hello everyone,

We hope you are having a nice fall! We wanted to share this month's opportunity to write a Letter to the Editor in support of solar energy. Please let us know if you draft and submit a letter! Below is an opinion piece published in The Dallas Morning News, “I looked at the latest electricity prices in Texas and got a shock.  "You can also find the text pasted below my signature. 

Below are a few “talking points” you could consider including in your letter to the editor. Please be sure to write the letter in your own words. 

  • February’s deadly freeze—and today’s soaring energy bills—show Texas is too dependent on unreliable gas plants. Instead, Texas should drive the energy transition by doubling down on our clean energy leadership.

  • Texas renewable energy can support resiliency and reliability.

Submission instructions


Here is the link to where you can submit your letter to The Dallas Morning News.

The letter must be under 200 words to be considered for publication. 

If you’re able to send in a letter in the next two days, great! Let us know. If not, no worries. There will be another opportunity to write soon.

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns or if you want us to review your letter before submitting.  Thanks for making helping promote a clean, just, and equitable energy future in Texas with rooftop solar as the cornerstone!

Best, 

Lisa 

--

Lisa Trope
Engagement Specialist
Solar United Neighbors

 

 

Have you looked at retail electricity prices lately?

On the suggestion of readers, I pulled up the state-sponsored marketing site — PowerToChoose.org (beware of imitators) — and it was like I stuck my finger in a wall socket. I was shocked.

For as long as The Watchdog can remember, the opening pages usually highlighted kilowatt hour rates of around 6 to 9 cents.

Now the opening pages show double-digit pricing of 10 cents or more.

Prices of the two dominant players in the market — TXU Energy and Reliant Energy — offer an added jolt.

TXU shows one-year plans for 1,000 kWh around 12 cents. Another listed plan offers a 15.9 cents rate.

On the TXU website, I saw different plans that varied from those presented on the state website. A reminder that with all companies, always remember to check both PowerToChoose and that company’s website.

Reliant shows plans on the state site from 13.4 cents to 15.2 cents for various kWh usage.

This chart by TexasElectricityRatings.com shows the cost of electricity in Texas from 2016 to Oct. 2021. It shows the average rate for 12-month electricity plans, which is what many customers choose.

This chart by TexasElectricityRatings.com shows the cost of electricity in Texas from 2016 to Oct. 2021. It shows the average rate for 12-month electricity plans, which is what many customers choose.(TexasElectricityRatings.com)

Oncor rate spikes

Another charge, the so-called Oncor charge for transmission to retail companies, jumped 19% in September. That means the mandatory fee for each kWh used grew from about 3.5 cents to 4.15 cents. That’s the first time I can remember the Oncor charge crashing the 4 cents a kWh barrier.

To compute your bill, if you use 1,000 kWh a month, multiply 1,000 times 4.15 cents. Then multiply 1,000 kWh by the retail rate you contracted to pay. Add the two together for total kWh fee. And don’t forget to add Oncor’s $3.42 monthly base charge on all bills on top of that.

Oncor tells The Watchdog the 19% increase, approved by the Public Utility Commission, is to help cover the cost of added equipment to handle North Texas’ growth.

Thanks to readers Jerome Giambalvo of Coppell, Doug Archer of Dallas and Phil Caron of Fort Worth for alerting The Watchdog about this.

Why such high prices?

What do Texas experts say about these price jumps?

Ed Hirs, an energy fellow at the University of Houston, says the banning of Griddy, which sold power at wholesale prices, removed a major incentive for retailers to keep their prices down to compete.

He says the increase in natural gas prices we’re seeing is another cause because many Texas power plants run on gas. He blames hurricanes which struck the Gulf of Mexico.

He also blames the Texas government’s bailout allowing companies to recoup billions of lost dollars during the horrific February freezeout through the purchase of $6.5 billion in bonds. Those costs will be passed on to consumers.

When the Texas Legislature sided with companies over consumers, he said, “You know the game is fixed.”

Beth Garza, who served until 2019 as the independent monitor of grid operator ERCOT, said companies selling one-year contracts must anticipate higher prices expected to increase during the length of those contracts.

James Boyle, who once led Texas’ Office of Public Utility Counsel, said: “We all know that what happened in the legislative session is that everybody was taken care of except the home folks. And the consumer pays for everybody else’s mistakes. I think that’s reflected in those prices.”

Kelso King, who runs King Energy Consulting and monitors all Public Utility Commission meetings, warns that still to come is the pass-through to consumers of the multi-billion-dollar bailout for energy companies. That was the solution approved by lawmakers and Gov. Greg Abbott.

King added, “For decades, policymakers kept saying that the great thing about a competitive market was that all of the risks would be borne by generators instead of ratepayers. But when it came down to it, unsurprisingly, end use customers were left holding the bag.”

Buy electricity in Texas

Here are some shopping tips from citizens of my Watchdog Nation.

Judy Ruby-Brown of Coppell was skeptical of Texas Power Switch, which works through cities, mostly, to buy electricity in bulk discount. When I assured her it’s a solid program, she ran the numbers, comparing other companies to it, and declared it the “real deal.” She still predicts she’ll spend $300 more on electricity than she did last year.

Nancy Upson of Dallas discovered one of the dirty secrets: If you buy a 1,000 kWh plan and your usage is above or below that exact amount each month, your rate skyrockets. She says consumers must strive to hit the mark, even if it is wasteful. This applies to 500 kWh and 2,000 kWh plans, too.

Dick Bunting of Bonham discovered that some companies that appear at the top of PowerToChoose.org with supposed low rates charge a $14.99 setup fee.

“Wonder how many folks have been fooled by this,” he asks.

Pam King of Houston says to be wary of outside consultants. Check their reviews and also electricity company reviews, too. Watch out for bait and switch, she says.

A retail company may try to sell you a different plan than the one you want. She says, “They’ll tell you it’s cheaper or has some sort of perk. One company tried to sell me a plan with an air conditioning maintenance contract included.”

She filed a complaint with the PUC on her current provider for charging the wrong transmission fee.

“I’m not the crazy one,” she concluded. “It’s the whole dysfunctional system.”

Amen.




Learn how it's possible for 1 in 4 Americans to go solar!

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Re: The all-electric future (NPR Marketplace Nov 15)

 

Molly, the house is in Irving and nearly under construction, as we are still preparing to start the foundation. I demolished my old house on August 10 - it had problems - and I’m living across the street in a rental house. You can follow the new house construction project visually on my webcam at:

That webcam is aimed north from the rental house at my construction site. It’s one block south of Hwy 183, about halfway between the center of DFW Airport and Love Field. The vehicles past the trees on the left side of the image are on MacArthur Blvd, a major north/south thoroughfare which starts around I-30 in Grand Prairie and runs though Irving, the Los Colinas and Valley Ranch Irving development areas, Coppell, and ends at Round Grove Road in Lewisville. The Baylor Scott & White hospital in Irving is across the street at the left of the cam image.

The project is going slow now. The only thing going on so far this week was the soil testing drilling truck visit around noon today to take two soil core samples. Over the past 5 weeks (due to rain delays) there have been two rounds of soil stabilization chemical injections. The first round failed to meet the engineering requirements, so the equipment had to be brought back in for a second round. We needed a string of several dry sunny days so it wasn’t muddy. 

In addition to supply chain issues, the construction industry locally is very busy right now. I started the house design process in February 2020, and I’m sure it won’t be completed in two years by February 2022. Demand is high on building materials, appliances, and labor. 

Bill


On Tue, Nov 16, 2021, at 8:35 AM, Molly wrote:

Bill, 
Your new house sounds great and like one we need to have on the DFW Solar Tour!  In what city is it located?
Thanks,
Molly Rooke

On Monday, November 15, 2021, 07:40:40 PM CST, Bill Byrom via groups.io <bill@...> wrote:


I just listened to this on the radio (KERA-FM locally) and you can listen online at:
Choose the Nov 15, 2021, episode. The piece about our all-electric future (with a real example in New Orleans) runs from 4:00 - 9:30.

The future sounds similar to the new house I'm building. I'm working with Michael Fladmark and Dan Lepinski on the solar panels, grid-tied inverter with off-grid capability, and a LFP (lithium iron phosphate) battery. I'm installing a GSHP (Ground Source Heat Pump) as described in the Marketplace episode. I wish they had also discussed energy efficient appliances (Energy Star and beyond) and energy efficient building techniques. Of course, there will be EV chargers in the garage.

I also need to eventually move to a full EV. Currently I own a 2020 Ford Fusion Energi 4-door PHEV with about 20-25 miles round-trip range (usually sufficient for my daily trips as a retired person) and of course it's also a hybrid vehicle with great gas mileage. But it has a tiny trunk, suitable for my backpack or one suitcase with not too much else, due to the HV batteries beneath and behind the rear seats. I also own a conventional ICE vehicle (2016 Dodge Caravan) which I purchased for a very good price from my employer when I retired and is good for moving big stuff. What I will be looking for in a few years is a medium sized SUV full EV with better range than most current EV models, which Ford (and GM) are moving toward this decade.
 


Sol Ark

Philip Timmons
 

Any one use or install and Sol Ark equipment, yet?

I have inherited an on-going project with some Sol-Ark in it.  Not getting much competent information from the docs or contact folks.

Any one know how to actually do business with them?   Would really like for them to work and turn out well -- they are local and seem to have some robust (at least in concept) equipment.

THANKS!

Phil Timmons
817-689-7573
philiptimmons@...


Re: The all-electric future (NPR Marketplace Nov 15)

Molly
 

Bill, 
Your new house sounds great and like one we need to have on the DFW Solar Tour!  In what city is it located?
Thanks,
Molly Rooke

On Monday, November 15, 2021, 07:40:40 PM CST, Bill Byrom via groups.io <bill@...> wrote:


I just listened to this on the radio (KERA-FM locally) and you can listen online at:
https://www.marketplace.org/shows/marketplace/
Choose the Nov 15, 2021, episode. The piece about our all-electric future (with a real example in New Orleans) runs from 4:00 - 9:30.

The future sounds similar to the new house I'm building. I'm working with Michael Fladmark and Dan Lepinski on the solar panels, grid-tied inverter with off-grid capability, and a LFP (lithium iron phosphate) battery. I'm installing a GSHP (Ground Source Heat Pump) as described in the Marketplace episode. I wish they had also discussed energy efficient appliances (Energy Star and beyond) and energy efficient building techniques. Of course, there will be EV chargers in the garage.

I also need to eventually move to a full EV. Currently I own a 2020 Ford Fusion Energi 4-door PHEV with about 20-25 miles round-trip range (usually sufficient for my daily trips as a retired person) and of course it's also a hybrid vehicle with great gas mileage. But it has a tiny trunk, suitable for my backpack or one suitcase with not too much else, due to the HV batteries beneath and behind the rear seats. I also own a conventional ICE vehicle (2016 Dodge Caravan) which I purchased for a very good price from my employer when I retired and is good for moving big stuff. What I will be looking for in a few years is a medium sized SUV full EV with better range than most current EV models, which Ford (and GM) are moving toward this decade.
 


Re: The all-electric future (NPR Marketplace Nov 15)

Mellen West
 

I heard it too.  Share with others who may not be so informed. I posted on Nextdoor.

M

 

From: main@NTREG.groups.io <main@NTREG.groups.io> On Behalf Of Bill Byrom via groups.io
Sent: Monday, 15 November, 2021 7:41 PM
To: main@NTREG.groups.io
Subject: [NTREG] The all-electric future (NPR Marketplace Nov 15)

 

I just listened to this on the radio (KERA-FM locally) and you can listen online at:
https://www.marketplace.org/shows/marketplace/
Choose the Nov 15, 2021, episode. The piece about our all-electric future (with a real example in New Orleans) runs from 4:00 - 9:30.

The future sounds similar to the new house I'm building. I'm working with Michael Fladmark and Dan Lepinski on the solar panels, grid-tied inverter with off-grid capability, and a LFP (lithium iron phosphate) battery. I'm installing a GSHP (Ground Source Heat Pump) as described in the Marketplace episode. I wish they had also discussed energy efficient appliances (Energy Star and beyond) and energy efficient building techniques. Of course, there will be EV chargers in the garage.

I also need to eventually move to a full EV. Currently I own a 2020 Ford Fusion Energi 4-door PHEV with about 20-25 miles round-trip range (usually sufficient for my daily trips as a retired person) and of course it's also a hybrid vehicle with great gas mileage. But it has a tiny trunk, suitable for my backpack or one suitcase with not too much else, due to the HV batteries beneath and behind the rear seats. I also own a conventional ICE vehicle (2016 Dodge Caravan) which I purchased for a very good price from my employer when I retired and is good for moving big stuff. What I will be looking for in a few years is a medium sized SUV full EV with better range than most current EV models, which Ford (and GM) are moving toward this decade.

 


The all-electric future (NPR Marketplace Nov 15)

 

I just listened to this on the radio (KERA-FM locally) and you can listen online at:
https://www.marketplace.org/shows/marketplace/
Choose the Nov 15, 2021, episode. The piece about our all-electric future (with a real example in New Orleans) runs from 4:00 - 9:30.

The future sounds similar to the new house I'm building. I'm working with Michael Fladmark and Dan Lepinski on the solar panels, grid-tied inverter with off-grid capability, and a LFP (lithium iron phosphate) battery. I'm installing a GSHP (Ground Source Heat Pump) as described in the Marketplace episode. I wish they had also discussed energy efficient appliances (Energy Star and beyond) and energy efficient building techniques. Of course, there will be EV chargers in the garage.

I also need to eventually move to a full EV. Currently I own a 2020 Ford Fusion Energi 4-door PHEV with about 20-25 miles round-trip range (usually sufficient for my daily trips as a retired person) and of course it's also a hybrid vehicle with great gas mileage. But it has a tiny trunk, suitable for my backpack or one suitcase with not too much else, due to the HV batteries beneath and behind the rear seats. I also own a conventional ICE vehicle (2016 Dodge Caravan) which I purchased for a very good price from my employer when I retired and is good for moving big stuff. What I will be looking for in a few years is a medium sized SUV full EV with better range than most current EV models, which Ford (and GM) are moving toward this decade.
 

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