The AEMC has released an issues paper which outlined some ideas of how electric cars might contribute to lower energy costs, rather than increasing them.
… It suggested with the right systems in place, households could use their electric car batteries to “soak up” excess rooftop solar generation
when energy was cheap and have the option to sell power back into the grid when it was more expensive.
Adding batteries to a home photovoltaic system reduces the energy payback of the entire system by 21 percent on average due to two factors.
… in states that allow solar owners to sell back to the grid at the same price the utilities charge consumers, utilities complain consumers are using them as a free battery.
While that policy may achieve environmental goals by encouraging home solar panels, it could become financially unsustainable for the utilities. Nevada in particular has tangled with this issue. The state
sharply reduced the rate utilities paid PV supply sellers in 2016, which caused a backlash. Two years later the state raised the rates to 95 percent of the retail rate consumers pay.
But where the situation becomes problematic is when there is a sharp change in generation, like when clouds blot out a mass of solar panels in Perth at once, or demand changes rapidly — an industrial customer going offline suddenly, for example.
In these circumstances, the
so-called firming services provided by conventional power plants, and which keep the system on an even keel, can be stretched thin.
That’s when the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO), which runs the wholesale market in WA and is responsible for keeping the lights on, begins to worry…
… But, of course, households with solar often use much less power from the grid.
They still cost just as much to service, but they’re paying a fraction compared with households that don’t or can’t have solar on their roofs.
… Under the scheme, households are paid a flat rate of 7.1 cents for every unit of electricity they pump back into the grid.
This excess energy is worth very little in the middle of the day — some in the energy industry would say nothing — and arguably a small fortune later in the day when it is actually needed.
There have been reports in countries like Yemen, Iran and Pakistan, even India, as well as new reports of locusts crossing into China.