a problem with electric meters?

Page 9 of 9  
George wrote:

You don't need to impliment smart-meters or time-of-use metering to reduce electricity use.
You just need to increase the cost per kwh (or add a new tax or increase any existing tax).

The commercial / industrial electricity market is FAR different in terms of metering individual customers compared to the residential market. The scale of use in terms of kwh per month is vastly different.
Individual residental customers do not use enough electricity on a monthly basis to warrant the costs of new electronic time-of-use smart meters, nor the associated costs of setting up and running the communications network nor the new billing systems.
(example of how one company time-shifted their useage)
You're asking for lifestyle changes on the house-hold level to achieve the same results as in your example.
Do you really think it's realistic to expect that to happen - when the benefits (in terms of $$$ savings) are measured in pennies-per-day?
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On 5/27/2012 9:13 AM, Home Guy wrote:

Sure, and make the US even less competitive. That's a sure-fire winner.

Made up for in large part by the relative numbers of residential customers as opposed to commercial.

Simply nonsense. They're not doing it for the fun of it.
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dpb wrote:

I didn't say that I agree with any sort of hyper-green agenda to force people into energy conservation.
What I meant was that if you're hell-bend on doing it (forcing people to use less) then simply making it more expensive in an up-front manner (with a tax of some sort) is more logical than incurring the costs associated with implimenting crazy and expensive new ways to measure it's time-of-use.

No, that does not make up for it.
If I manage a plant, and if I can save $10,000 a month by altering some aspect of when I use electricity (and it doesn't add other costs somewhere else) then yes, I say give me a smart meter, and let me impliment the change and save money - even if the smart meter is going to cost me an extra $20 a month in some new fee invented by the utility.
If I'm a home owner, and if I time-shift 10% of the 1000 kwh I use per month to save 5 cents for those 100 kwh, then I'm going to be rewarded with a savings of $5. After you add the $5 a month extra new fees for the smart-meter, there's no savings - no reward for time-shifting my use (or setting my A/C to a higher temperature).
So do the math, and tell me if an individual home-owner is going to turn off (or turn down) their A/C during the hottest months of the summer -> just to save a lousy $5 a month (the cost of a latte at Starbucks).
Collectively - yes. Residential electricity use is huge. But residential usage decisions are made on an individual level, and that's where your reasoning breaks down.

They're doing it because (a) customers will end up paying the entire cost (meters, network, billing) and (b) the utilities will save on meter-reading costs.
Customers will end up paying $500 in new costs over the life-span of the new meter, while the utilities will save $100 in manpower costs.
Why?
Because local utilites are in a monopoly position. There is no competition when it comes to metering. Home owners can't choose Company A vs Company B when it comes to the DELIVERY of their electricity. There is only 1 set of wires going to your home - not 2 or 3.
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On 5/27/2012 11:56 AM, Home Guy wrote: ...

You have the data to prove that contention?
We (local rural electric co-op) are switching and like many others that have posted here, are _not_ charging a dime to the end user for the remote-reading meters (even if some have).
Collectively, it will save money for the end user because the collective demand leveling will show up on the overall grid.
Your focus on an individual doesn't address the larger issue that the utility has to provide for the peak demand and the peak is controlled by a very large number of little loads. Getting those spread out by modifying habits of a sizable fraction of those numbers (and yes, while you may be one of the intransigent and refuse to change any habits simply out of obstinacy if for no other reason, many will look to save that small monthly amount) will wind up allowing for far larger savings than simply the meter readers by minimizing upgrading of substations, transmission lines and even generation. If it doesn't eliminate growth demand, it can at least slow the rate.
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wrote:

Well, thanks all. Although money is a problem for her -- iirc she told me they raised her health insurance premium a lot while cutting benefits -- I didn 't think her objection was just to the money. I don't know if they have said how much money they'll be charging, if any.

I think it's on Saturday night, and when I'm not doing anything else, there is certainly nothing else on tv or the radio, so maybe I'll isten to see if he's a wacko too.
Late at night the station has George Nuri (sp?) for 3 or 4 hours, who often doesn't say much, but his callers are sure wackos.
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