Why Californians have sky-high electricity bills — no surprises here

Posted: May 6, 2021 by oldbrew in climate, Critique, Emissions, Energy, fuel poverty
Tags: , ,


Solar power complex in California [USA. Gov – BLM – Bureau of Land Management]

The Golden State isn’t a good place to be poor, and that’s set to get worse thanks to the ill-founded climate obsessions of its leaders, as this article observes. Others following their model can expect to face similar issues.
– – –
California is known to have the most expensive electricity in the U.S., and the distributed nature of its grid is negatively affecting less-wealthy Californians, says OilPrice.com.

Californians pay for some of the most expensive electricity in the United States. They also live in one of the greenest states, at least from an energy perspective.

California is only going to get greener. Meanwhile, electricity bills are expected to continue their rise. Some deny there is a link between the two.

The facts show otherwise.

A paper by the California Public Utilities Commission released earlier this year identified the state’s plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by adopting more renewable energy as one big factor for bigger utility bills and expectations for further increases in electricity rates in the coming years.

The report said that while the state’s plans to reduce emissions will negatively affect electricity bills, a concerted switch to what the authors call “all electric homes and electric vehicles” could lead to a substantial drop in monthly bills.

However, this would require a large upfront investment, which would be impossible to shoulder by medium- and lower-income households.

“In the absence of subsidies and low-cost financing options, this could create equity concerns for low- to moderate-income households and exacerbate existing disparities in electricity affordability,” the report said.

But funding such a hypothetical move to “all electric homes and electric vehicles” is only part of the problem. Another part, ironically, is distributed energy systems.

A March report in CalMatters summarized the reasons for Californians’ high electricity bills as follows: first, the size and geography of the state make the fixed costs associated with the maintenance of its grid higher than in most other states; second, households with rooftop solar installations don’t pay for these fixed costs even if they use the grid. And all this is deepening the divide between wealthy and not-so-wealthy Californians, making electricity increasingly less affordable for the latter.

Distributed solar installations appear to be only affordable for the wealthier citizens of the state. They can afford the upfront costs and then benefit from lower electricity bills, according to one of the authors of a UC Berkeley’s Haas Business School study that CalMatters cited in its report.

Full article here.

  1. Roger,

    The Biden Administration has some trillions of dollars to pay people to not work. The unemployment rate has gone down because many would rather get free money than go to work. The people who are trying to hire people to work are having a really hard time. People who work are generally some better off financially, but they do lose a lot of free time. If you don’t do anything, you don’t need much. All that is required is that they sign some mail in ballots for each election. They are transporting the illegal immigrants to regions they believe they will need more votes in future elections. just some of my thoughts. Thank you for yours.

    Alex Pope

    On Thu, May 6, 2021 at 4:51 PM Tallbloke’s Talkshop wrote:

    > oldbrew posted: “The Sunshine State isn’t a good place to be poor, and > that’s set to get worse thanks to the ill-founded climate obsessions of its > leaders, as this article observes. Others following their model can expect > to face similar issues. – – – California is known ” >

  2. oldbrew says:

    Report: California’s government certainly has its emission-reduction work cut out for it. On the one hand, electricity bills are rising along with renewable power capacity and the retirement of fossil fuel power plants. On the other, grid reliability leaves a lot to be desired.

    Like night follows day.

  3. Phoenix44 says:

    The endless attempts to make something that is inherently more expensive somehow not more expensive. Because some people refuse to accept their fantasies are fantasies.

  4. Graeme No.3 says:

    South Australia still leads in the race to disaster. Narrowly escaping another blackstart on March 12. Since then the gas-fired backup has been in standby mode or running near capacity. The usual problem, the wind isn’t blowing in a reliable fashion and overcast days (winter is coming) reducing solar.

  5. Clyde says:

    Oh, I don’t know… this past month my electric bill was $12.41, and I’m in CA.

    No solar panels, etc. Just an invention of mine which will be made public when I’ve got it perfected (ie: when I can build more than a tabletop toy model, which is all I’ve currently got). No fuel, no cost other than the parts to build it (although that cost is substantial), no emissions, it automatically parallels to the grid and automatically disconnects when the grid goes down (because it uses a microinverter intended to be used for solar panels)… Nikola Tesla was right after all.

    “It is a mere question of time when men will succeed in attaching their machinery to the very wheelwork of nature.” – Nikola Tesla

  6. stpaulchuck says:

    our Canadian cousins are hosing the US thoroughly over this nonsense. They buy cheap overnight windmill electricity and use it to pump water uphill into the reservoirs. Then during the day they sell it back to us at a multiple of what they bought it for as all that water turns their turbines.

  7. oldbrew says:

    Chuck – sounds like the Norwegians and the Danes all over again.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s