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Thread: Big increase in PG&E E-9 rates (N. Cal.)

  1. #1
    Member slcasner's Avatar
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    Big increase in PG&E E-9 rates (N. Cal.)

    Those of you who live in Northern California and are served electricity by PG&E should read the following information.

    PG&E has filed Advice 3910-E with the California Public Utilities Commission in accordance with CPUC Decision D.11-07-029 proposing to revise the E-9 rate schedule that is optional for customers who charge an EV. This proposal eliminates surcharge tiers so that customers who already use a lot of electricity and then add an EV won't be hit hard by going into the high tiers as a consequence of using more electricity than before. That might seem like a good thing, and it would be for some people

    However, this single-tier rate is set at a level that is roughly double the part-peak and off-peak rates from the lowest tier of the current E-9 rate schedule (going from 5.5 cents to 11 cents per kWh for the off-peak when we do all our EV charging) . For those of us who have invested in solar power and/or who are very conservative in their power use to keep their consumption in the lowest tier, this is a big increase. They have also instituted year-round 3pm - 9pm peak rates, rather than only in the summer.

    PG&E is also proposing to translate the current $8.00 per month meter fee (that we are currently paying and that was to be eliminated with the installation of SmartMeters) into a fixed "customer charge". That seems unfair given that the average E-1 customer does not pay such a charge.

    PG&E's advice letter states that 3/4 of the customers currently taking service on the E-9A rate schedule will be negatively impacted, with the worst quartile seeing an average increase of 80%. I can only assume that they expect us to switch to some other rate schedule. But the only choices are non-TOU E-1 at 12 cents or the E-6 TOU rate schedule with 9.3/16/27 cents per kWh for off/part/peak periods. To me, the proposed change clearly decreases the incentive to charge between midnight and 7am that the current E-9 rate schedule favors.

    Here is a link to the Advice 3910-E letter (PDF document): http://www.pge.com/nots/rates/tariff...LEC_3910-E.pdf

    The CPUC Decision D.11-07-29 document (PDF) is here: http://docs.cpuc.ca.gov/word_pdf/FIN...ION/139969.pdf

    There is an opportunity to file protests by October 17. I have found out the hard way that protesting a PG&E Advice letter is pointless if that letter is simply implementing what PG&E was directed to do by the CPUC. There is some wiggle-room in this case because the CPUC only ordered that the E-9B separate-meter rate be changed. The CPUC did not order that the E-9A single-meter (whole house) rate be changed, but they did support doing so. The main counter-argument that PG&E will wage is that the E-9 rate for tiers 1 and 2 is below the true cost. This is stated in their Advice Letter. However, that is as it should be: if tier 1 was the true cost, then the full increment for tiers above that would be extra profit.

    The CPUC decision was issued in July. Such decisions follow hearings in which the stakeholders can make comments, but it is very hard for individuals to play in that game. I have not investigated yet whether there have been any positions stated by TURN or proponents of EV and/or solar technologies. However, the list of stakewholders did not include the main solar players, and I think that is part of the problem.

  2. #2
    Senior Member smorgasbord's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slcasner View Post
    There is an opportunity to file protests by October 17. I have found out the hard way that protesting a PG&E Advice letter is pointless...
    Are you saying that there's really nothing we can do at this point?

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    If you read the definition of peek time carefully, you find it is self contradictory. The change should be rejected on that basis alone but they will just fix that.

    They compared existing E-9A use with the new one to get those increase figures, but they did not compare it against E-1 or E-6 so there the CPUC is getting no indication how much TOU incentive is being destroyed.

    I don't have a problem with the rates in question, but the peek periods definition and the fixed customer charge. They tried to add the fixed customer charge into E-1 a couple months ago but that didn't fly. Possibly illegal.

    Still, I programmed the new rate into my TED (theenergydetective.com) and did some spreadsheet figuring and the new E-9A rate seems to be, for me, midway between old E-9A and E-1.

  4. #4
    Member slcasner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smorgasbord View Post
    Are you saying that there's really nothing we can do at this point?
    I will be filing a protest. You can, too. I said that filing a protest is pointless if the advice letter is just implementing what the CPUC ordered. In this case, the CPUC order leaves the rate design open to some degree, so I have some room to argue.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Lloyd's Avatar
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    It's already happened here in central California. My monthly meter charge went from about $12 to $58. I produce more than I use so that is all that I pay.
    SP-2823(sold), Tesla/Rav4EV, P+17252, XP-12

  6. #6
    Member slcasner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaanton View Post
    If you read the definition of peek time carefully, you find it is self contradictory. The change should be rejected on that basis alone but they will just fix that.
    Yes, I noticed that glitch. Worse than the glitch is the fact that they introduced peak time on weekends. With the existing E-9A, we enjoy the additional flexibility for power usage on weekends so we can cook with the electric oven, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by jaanton View Post
    They compared existing E-9A use with the new one to get those increase figures, but they did not compare it against E-1 or E-6 so there the CPUC is getting no indication how much TOU incentive is being destroyed.
    Right. For customers who are not in the higher tiers now, the new E-9A would likely cost more than E-1.

    Quote Originally Posted by jaanton View Post
    I don't have a problem with the rates in question, but the peek periods definition and the fixed customer charge. They tried to add the fixed customer charge into E-1 a couple months ago but that didn't fly. Possibly illegal.
    Do you have pointers to the CPUC documents for that decision?

    Quote Originally Posted by jaanton View Post
    Still, I programmed the new rate into my TED (theenergydetective.com) and did some spreadsheet figuring and the new E-9A rate seems to be, for me, midway between old E-9A and E-1.
    I haven't done the detailed calculations yet, but I think it would double my costs.

  7. #7
    Member slcasner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lloyd View Post
    It's already happened here in central California. My monthly meter charge went from about $12 to $58. I produce more than I use so that is all that I pay.
    That is a big jump. Are you sure that is all meter charge? Are you served by PG&E or someone else?

    My monthly bill from PG&E on the current E-9A includes an $8.00 meter charge plus about $4.00 minimum energy charge, but the minimum energy charge is counted toward the total energy usage at the annual true-up.

  8. #8
    Roadster 472 - S 440
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    It is yet to be seen what the final results will be - but a decision has been delayed by an additional 2 weeks specifically in order to evaluate our protest letters.

  9. #9
    Model S Res#P1440 Kipernicus's Avatar
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    PG&E E-9 rate

    Saw this in another thread and wanted to bring it to everyone's attention. I don't expect to get my S until Nov/Dec. Should I / can I sign up for E-9 rate now?

    Quote Originally Posted by slcasner View Post
    If you want to enroll in the E-9 rate schedule, don't dally too long. PG&E has just released a proposal to the CPUC to replace E-9 with Schedule EV, which is much less favorable, particularly if you have solar PV as well. E-9 will only remain open until Schedule EV becomes effective. Furthermore, E-9 will be discontinued after a couple more years (in conjunction with new rate designs as part of PG&E's 2014 general rate case), but that is another battle to be fought.

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    Do you have more information on this as I have solar panels and like you, live in the Bay Area and expect my Model S in October/November

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