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Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

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  • Chris Boyer
    Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that was part of the bank bail out bill.   There is now a Federal Tax Credit for
    Message 1 of 19 , Nov 14, 2008
      Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that was part of the bank bail out bill.   There is now a Federal Tax Credit for solar photovoltaic systems.  This tax credit is very significant for home owners in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is comparable to buying electricity from your utility company.
       
      Here's the math (simple version):
      PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
      Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
      Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
      The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over 25 years
      The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
      That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
       
      Example:
      3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
      Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
       
      Here's the math another way (complex version)
      Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.  If I had the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get a certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free investment at this time, let me know!).
      We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other number) and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on our investment.  If we do that, we also have to assume that electric rates are going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have increased at an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade.  If you escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation (0.5% per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you still come up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%.  This may not seem like a high return; however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the system if damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the nation toward sustainability.
       
      Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the same rate that you expect electricity to escalate.
       
      Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
       
      Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
      (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to incomprehensible jibberish).
             
      Year
      Generation    
      (kWh/yr)   
      Elect
      ($/kWh)
      $Solar Revenue
      000.20-8000
      112800.202656
      212740.22280
      312670.24307
      412610.27336
      512550.29367
      612480.32402
      712420.35440
      812360.39482
      912300.43527
      1012240.47577
      1112170.52632
      1212110.57691
      1312050.63757
      1411990.69828
      1511930.76906
      1611870.84992
      1711810.921086
      1811751.011188
      1911701.111301
      2011641.221423
      2111581.351558
      2211521.481705
      2311461.631866
      2411411.792043
      2511351.972236
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
    • Garth & Kim Travis
      Greetings, Chris, where do we find the actual information on the bill? For a farm, there often are caviets about what is used for the home vs the actual farm.
      Message 2 of 19 , Nov 15, 2008
        Greetings,
        Chris, where do we find the actual information on the bill? For a farm,
        there often are caviets about what is used for the home vs the actual
        farm. Also, contractors in the rural areas are generally a bad idea, so
        we would need to know if the credits apply to diy.
        Bright Blessings,
        Kim

        Chris Boyer wrote:
        >
        >
      • Robert Johnston
        Chris, You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25 years, you d have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less favorable.
        Message 3 of 19 , Nov 15, 2008

          Chris,

           

          You are missing the capital cost.  If you financed the purchase over 25 years, you’d have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less favorable.  Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased property taxes, and maintenance costs, and you’ll jack the price up even further.  BTW, I just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy yesterday (for Brazoria County), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.


          Robert Johnston

           

          From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Chris Boyer
          Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
          To: HREG
          Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

           

          Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that was part of the bank bail out bill.   There is now a Federal Tax Credit for solar photovoltaic systems.  This tax credit is very significant for home owners in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is comparable to buying electricity from your utility company.

           

          Here's the math (simple version):

          PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.

          Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).

          Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed

          The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over 25 years

          The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh

          That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).

           

          Example:

          3.5 kW System Cost $28,000

          Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)

           

          Here's the math another way (complex version)

          Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.  If I had the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get a certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free investment at this time, let me know!).

          We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other number) and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on our investment.  If we do that, we also have to assume that electric rates are going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have increased at an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade.  If you escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation (0.5% per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you still come up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%.  This may not seem like a high return; however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the system if damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the nation toward sustainability.

           

          Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the same rate that you expect electricity to escalate.

           

          Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.

           

          Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:

          (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to incomprehensible jibberish).

                 

          Year

          Generation    

          (kWh/yr)   

          Elect

          ($/kWh)

          $Solar Revenue

          0

          0

          0.20

          -8000

          1

          1280

          0.20

          2656

          2

          1274

          0.22

          280

          3

          1267

          0.24

          307

          4

          1261

          0.27

          336

          5

          1255

          0.29

          367

          6

          1248

          0.32

          402

          7

          1242

          0.35

          440

          8

          1236

          0.39

          482

          9

          1230

          0.43

          527

          10

          1224

          0.47

          577

          11

          1217

          0.52

          632

          12

          1211

          0.57

          691

          13

          1205

          0.63

          757

          14

          1199

          0.69

          828

          15

          1193

          0.76

          906

          16

          1187

          0.84

          992

          17

          1181

          0.92

          1086

          18

          1175

          1.01

          1188

          19

          1170

          1.11

          1301

          20

          1164

          1.22

          1423

          21

          1158

          1.35

          1558

          22

          1152

          1.48

          1705

          23

          1146

          1.63

          1866

          24

          1141

          1.79

          2043

          25

          1135

          1.97

          2236

           

           

           

           

           

           

           

        • Jay Ring
          I agree that neglecting the capital cost is a major omission. I hadn t thought of insurance, but that seems significant too. However, I seem to remember that
          Message 4 of 19 , Nov 15, 2008
            I agree that neglecting the capital cost is a major omission. I
            hadn't thought of insurance, but that seems significant too.

            However, I seem to remember that the increased value is exempt from
            property tax (in Texas). So that's not too bad.

            I also agree that 4% is not bad considering how risk free it is.
            However, it's not -entirely- risk free - if there is a decrease in the
            price of electricity instead of the assumed increase then you have
            pretty significant risk. It's up to you to decide how likely you
            think that situation is; there is really no accurate way to predict
            that 25 years into the future. Most prices fall over the long run,
            but non-renewable resources can act rise. Since energy can be
            generated by renewable and non-renewable means - it's anyone's guess!


            --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:
            >
            > Chris,
            >
            >
            >
            > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25
            > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
            > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
            property taxes,
            > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
            BTW, I
            > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
            > yesterday (for Brazoria County), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
            >
            >
            > Robert Johnston
            >
            >
            >
            > From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
            Of Chris
            > Boyer
            > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
            > To: HREG
            > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
            was part
            > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for solar
            > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
            owners
            > in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is
            comparable
            > to buying electricity from your utility company.
            >
            >
            >
            > Here's the math (simple version):
            >
            > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
            >
            > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
            >
            > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
            >
            > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over
            25 years
            >
            > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
            >
            > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
            >
            >
            >
            > Example:
            >
            > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
            >
            > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
            >
            >
            >
            > Here's the math another way (complex version)
            >
            > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
            If I had
            > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get a
            > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
            investment at
            > this time, let me know!).
            >
            > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
            number)
            > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on our
            > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
            rates are
            > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
            increased at
            > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade. If you
            > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
            (0.5%
            > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
            still come
            > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
            return;
            > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
            system if
            > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the nation
            toward
            > sustainability.
            >
            >
            >
            > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
            same rate
            > that you expect electricity to escalate.
            >
            >
            >
            > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
            >
            >
            >
            > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
            >
            > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to incomprehensible
            > jibberish).
            >
            >
            >
            >
            > Year
            >
            > Generation
            >
            > (kWh/yr)
            >
            > Elect
            >
            > ($/kWh)
            >
            > $Solar Revenue
            >
            >
            > 0
            >
            > 0
            >
            > 0.20
            >
            > -8000
            >
            >
            > 1
            >
            > 1280
            >
            > 0.20
            >
            > 2656
            >
            >
            > 2
            >
            > 1274
            >
            > 0.22
            >
            > 280
            >
            >
            > 3
            >
            > 1267
            >
            > 0.24
            >
            > 307
            >
            >
            > 4
            >
            > 1261
            >
            > 0.27
            >
            > 336
            >
            >
            > 5
            >
            > 1255
            >
            > 0.29
            >
            > 367
            >
            >
            > 6
            >
            > 1248
            >
            > 0.32
            >
            > 402
            >
            >
            > 7
            >
            > 1242
            >
            > 0.35
            >
            > 440
            >
            >
            > 8
            >
            > 1236
            >
            > 0.39
            >
            > 482
            >
            >
            > 9
            >
            > 1230
            >
            > 0.43
            >
            > 527
            >
            >
            > 10
            >
            > 1224
            >
            > 0.47
            >
            > 577
            >
            >
            > 11
            >
            > 1217
            >
            > 0.52
            >
            > 632
            >
            >
            > 12
            >
            > 1211
            >
            > 0.57
            >
            > 691
            >
            >
            > 13
            >
            > 1205
            >
            > 0.63
            >
            > 757
            >
            >
            > 14
            >
            > 1199
            >
            > 0.69
            >
            > 828
            >
            >
            > 15
            >
            > 1193
            >
            > 0.76
            >
            > 906
            >
            >
            > 16
            >
            > 1187
            >
            > 0.84
            >
            > 992
            >
            >
            > 17
            >
            > 1181
            >
            > 0.92
            >
            > 1086
            >
            >
            > 18
            >
            > 1175
            >
            > 1.01
            >
            > 1188
            >
            >
            > 19
            >
            > 1170
            >
            > 1.11
            >
            > 1301
            >
            >
            > 20
            >
            > 1164
            >
            > 1.22
            >
            > 1423
            >
            >
            > 21
            >
            > 1158
            >
            > 1.35
            >
            > 1558
            >
            >
            > 22
            >
            > 1152
            >
            > 1.48
            >
            > 1705
            >
            >
            > 23
            >
            > 1146
            >
            > 1.63
            >
            > 1866
            >
            >
            > 24
            >
            > 1141
            >
            > 1.79
            >
            > 2043
            >
            >
            > 25
            >
            > 1135
            >
            > 1.97
            >
            > 2236
            >
          • Henry Haynes
            We were on the verge of putting in a PV system, so I ran what you might call a “real time” spreadsheet. I’ll say up front that every system is going to
            Message 5 of 19 , Nov 16, 2008

              We were on the verge of putting in a PV system, so I ran what you might call a “real time” spreadsheet.  I’ll say up front that every system is going to be different.  I factored in the 30% tax credit, the financing I had arranged, etc.  The financing (an LOC) was set for a 15 year payout at ??% (I don’t have my data in front of me.) to start at a time of my choosing.  I planned to pay an arbitrary monthly payment until I received the tax credit (taken all the first year) & then start the 15 year payout.  This means I would be paying over a total of about 16-17 years.  During that time the amount I would be paying for the PV portion of my electricity would average about $0.41/kwh.  Of course the PV electricity after the payout would be “free” based on this approach, but we’re at the age that we might not benefit much from this “free” period.  My figures could easily be used to justify putting in a system now, particularly if you factor in the predicted increase in electric rates (an unknown).  We will probably put in a system eventually….just no right now.

               

              I’ve got to go to church…..more later….

               

              HHH

               


              From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of Jay Ring
              Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2008 10:46 PM
              To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

               

              I agree that neglecting the capital cost is a major omission. I
              hadn't thought of insurance, but that seems significant too.

              However, I seem to remember that the increased value is exempt from
              property tax (in Texas ). So that's not too bad.

              I also agree that 4% is not bad considering how risk free it is.
              However, it's not -entirely- risk free - if there is a decrease in the
              price of electricity instead of the assumed increase then you have
              pretty significant risk. It's up to you to decide how likely you
              think that situation is; there is really no accurate way to predict
              that 25 years into the future. Most prices fall over the long run,
              but non-renewable resources can act rise. Since energy can be
              generated by renewable and non-renewable means - it's anyone's guess!

              --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:

              >
              > Chris,
              >
              >
              >
              > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25
              > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
              > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
              property taxes,
              > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
              BTW, I
              > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
              > yesterday (for Brazoria
              County ), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
              >
              >
              > Robert Johnston
              >
              >
              >
              > From: hreg@yahoogroups. com
              [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf
              Of Chris
              > Boyer
              > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
              > To: HREG
              > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
              was part
              > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for solar
              > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
              owners
              > in Houston
              because it now means that buying solar electricity is
              comparable
              > to buying electricity from your utility company.
              >
              >
              >
              > Here's the math (simple version):
              >
              > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
              >
              > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
              >
              > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
              >
              > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in
              w:st="on">Houston over
              25 years
              >
              > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
              >
              > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
              >
              >
              >
              > Example:
              >
              > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
              >
              > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
              >
              >
              >
              > Here's the math another way (complex version)
              >
              > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
              If I had
              > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get a
              > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
              investment at
              > this time, let me know!).
              >
              > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
              number)
              > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on our
              > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
              rates are
              > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
              increased at
              > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas
              over the last decade. If you
              > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
              (0.5%
              > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
              still come
              > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
              return;
              > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
              system if
              > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the nation
              toward
              > sustainability.
              >
              >
              >
              > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
              same rate
              > that you expect electricity to escalate.
              >
              >
              >
              > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
              >
              >
              >
              > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
              >
              > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to incomprehensible
              > jibberish).
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > Year
              >
              > Generation
              >
              > (kWh/yr)
              >
              > Elect
              >
              > ($/kWh)
              >
              > $Solar Revenue
              >
              >
              > 0
              >
              > 0
              >
              > 0.20
              >
              > -8000
              >
              >
              > 1
              >
              > 1280
              >
              > 0.20
              >
              > 2656
              >
              >
              > 2
              >
              > 1274
              >
              > 0.22
              >
              > 280
              >
              >
              > 3
              >
              > 1267
              >
              > 0.24
              >
              > 307
              >
              >
              > 4
              >
              > 1261
              >
              > 0.27
              >
              > 336
              >
              >
              > 5
              >
              > 1255
              >
              > 0.29
              >
              > 367
              >
              >
              > 6
              >
              > 1248
              >
              > 0.32
              >
              > 402
              >
              >
              > 7
              >
              > 1242
              >
              > 0.35
              >
              > 440
              >
              >
              > 8
              >
              > 1236
              >
              > 0.39
              >
              > 482
              >
              >
              > 9
              >
              > 1230
              >
              > 0.43
              >
              > 527
              >
              >
              > 10
              >
              > 1224
              >
              > 0.47
              >
              > 577
              >
              >
              > 11
              >
              > 1217
              >
              > 0.52
              >
              > 632
              >
              >
              > 12
              >
              > 1211
              >
              > 0.57
              >
              > 691
              >
              >
              > 13
              >
              > 1205
              >
              > 0.63
              >
              > 757
              >
              >
              > 14
              >
              > 1199
              >
              > 0.69
              >
              > 828
              >
              >
              > 15
              >
              > 1193
              >
              > 0.76
              >
              > 906
              >
              >
              > 16
              >
              > 1187
              >
              > 0.84
              >
              > 992
              >
              >
              > 17
              >
              > 1181
              >
              > 0.92
              >
              > 1086
              >
              >
              > 18
              >
              > 1175
              >
              > 1.01
              >
              > 1188
              >
              >
              > 19
              >
              > 1170
              >
              > 1.11
              >
              > 1301
              >
              >
              > 20
              >
              > 1164
              >
              > 1.22
              >
              > 1423
              >
              >
              > 21
              >
              > 1158
              >
              > 1.35
              >
              > 1558
              >
              >
              > 22
              >
              > 1152
              >
              > 1.48
              >
              > 1705
              >
              >
              > 23
              >
              > 1146
              >
              > 1.63
              >
              > 1866
              >
              >
              > 24
              >
              > 1141
              >
              > 1.79
              >
              > 2043
              >
              >
              > 25
              >
              > 1135
              >
              > 1.97
              >
              > 2236
              >


              No virus found in this incoming message.
              Checked by AVG.
              Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1790 - Release Date: 11/15/2008 9:32 AM


              No virus found in this outgoing message.
              Checked by AVG.
              Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1792 - Release Date: 11/16/2008 10:04 AM

            • Garth & Kim Travis
              Greetings, For anyone in a rural area, we have no choice about who we buy from and $0.179 is cheaper than I pay, now. No choice, I am on a coop. Also, is that
              Message 6 of 19 , Nov 16, 2008
                Greetings,
                For anyone in a rural area, we have no choice about who we buy from and
                $0.179 is cheaper than I pay, now. No choice, I am on a coop. Also, is
                that the published rate or the entire electric bill divided by kwhs
                used, which is a real price. All those 'extra' charges are part of the
                cost that also can't be ignored.
                Bright Blessings,
                Kim

                Robert Johnston wrote:
                >
                > Chris,
                >
                > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25
                > years, you’d have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased property
                > taxes, and maintenance costs, and you’ll jack the price up even
                > further. BTW, I just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan
                > from Spark Energy yesterday (for Brazoria County), so your 17.9
                > cents/kWh sounds high.
                >
                >
                > Robert Johnston
                >
                > _._,___
              • Robert Johnston
                The 12.9 I mentioned was before taxes/fees, which should bring it to about 13.1. Robert ... From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                Message 7 of 19 , Nov 16, 2008
                  The 12.9 I mentioned was before taxes/fees, which should bring it to about
                  13.1.

                  Robert

                  -----Original Message-----
                  From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Garth
                  & Kim Travis
                  Sent: Sunday, November 16, 2008 11:53 AM
                  To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                  Subject: Re: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                  Greetings,
                  For anyone in a rural area, we have no choice about who we buy from and
                  $0.179 is cheaper than I pay, now. No choice, I am on a coop. Also, is
                  that the published rate or the entire electric bill divided by kwhs
                  used, which is a real price. All those 'extra' charges are part of the
                  cost that also can't be ignored.
                  Bright Blessings,
                  Kim

                  Robert Johnston wrote:
                  >
                  > Chris,
                  >
                  > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25
                  > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                  > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased property
                  > taxes, and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even
                  > further. BTW, I just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan
                  > from Spark Energy yesterday (for Brazoria County), so your 17.9
                  > cents/kWh sounds high.
                  >
                  >
                  > Robert Johnston
                  >
                  > _._,___

                  ------------------------------------

                  Yahoo! Groups Links
                • Don Sandros
                  All: Excel spread sheet showing the national trends in kW rates since 1960-2007 from DOE....In 1960 national residential rates were @ 2.6 cents and 2007 are
                  Message 8 of 19 , Nov 17, 2008
                    All: 

                    Excel spread sheet showing the national trends in kW rates since 1960-2007 from DOE....In 1960 national residential rates were @ 2.6 cents and 2007 are 10.64 cents according to DOE....

                    don

                    ----- Original Message -----
                    From: "Henry Haynes"
                    To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                    Date: Sun, 16 Nov 2008 08:15:05 -0600

                    We were on the verge of putting in a PV system, so I ran what you might call a “real time” spreadsheet.  I’ll say up front that every system is going to be different.  I factored in the 30% tax credit, the financing I had arranged, etc.  The financing (an LOC) was set for a 15 year payout at ??% (I don’t have my data in front of me.) to start at a time of my choosing.  I planned to pay an arbitrary monthly payment until I received the tax credit (taken all the first year) & then start the 15 year payout.  This means I would be paying over a total of about 16-17 years.  During that time the amount I would be paying for the PV portion of my electricity would average about $0.41/kwh.  Of course the PV electricity after the payout would be “free” based on this approach, but we’re at the age that we might not benefit much from this “free” period.  My figures could easily be used to justify putting in a system now, particularly if you factor in the predicted increase in electric rates (an unknown).  We will probably put in a system eventually….just no right now.

                     

                    I’ve got to go to church…..more later….

                     

                    HHH

                     


                    From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Jay Ring
                    Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2008 10:46 PM
                    To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                    Subject: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                     

                    I agree that neglecting the capital cost is a major omission. I
                    hadn't thought of insurance, but that seems significant too.

                    However, I seem to remember that the increased value is exempt from
                    property tax (in Texas ). So that's not too bad.

                    I also agree that 4% is not bad considering how risk free it is.
                    However, it's not -entirely- risk free - if there is a decrease in the
                    price of electricity instead of the assumed increase then you have
                    pretty significant risk. It's up to you to decide how likely you
                    think that situation is; there is really no accurate way to predict
                    that 25 years into the future. Most prices fall over the long run,
                    but non-renewable resources can act rise. Since energy can be
                    generated by renewable and non-renewable means - it's anyone's guess!

                    --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Chris,
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25
                    > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                    > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
                    property taxes,
                    > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
                    BTW, I
                    > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
                    > yesterday (for Brazoria County ), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
                    >
                    >
                    > Robert Johnston
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf
                    Of Chris
                    > Boyer
                    > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
                    > To: HREG
                    > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
                    was part
                    > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for solar
                    > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
                    owners
                    > in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is
                    comparable
                    > to buying electricity from your utility company.
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Here's the math (simple version):
                    >
                    > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
                    >
                    > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
                    >
                    > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
                    >
                    > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over
                    25 years
                    >
                    > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
                    >
                    > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Example:
                    >
                    > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
                    >
                    > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Here's the math another way (complex version)
                    >
                    > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
                    If I had
                    > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get a
                    > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
                    investment at
                    > this time, let me know!).
                    >
                    > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
                    number)
                    > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on our
                    > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
                    rates are
                    > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
                    increased at
                    > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade. If you
                    > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
                    (0.5%
                    > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
                    still come
                    > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
                    return;
                    > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
                    system if
                    > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the nation
                    toward
                    > sustainability.
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
                    same rate
                    > that you expect electricity to escalate.
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
                    >
                    > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to incomprehensible
                    > jibberish).
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > Year
                    >
                    > Generation
                    >
                    > (kWh/yr)
                    >
                    > Elect
                    >
                    > ($/kWh)
                    >
                    > $Solar Revenue
                    >
                    >
                    > 0
                    >
                    > 0
                    >
                    > 0.20
                    >
                    > -8000
                    >
                    >
                    > 1
                    >
                    > 1280
                    >
                    > 0.20
                    >
                    > 2656
                    >
                    >
                    > 2
                    >
                    > 1274
                    >
                    > 0.22
                    >
                    > 280
                    >
                    >
                    > 3
                    >
                    > 1267
                    >
                    > 0.24
                    >
                    > 307
                    >
                    >
                    > 4
                    >
                    > 1261
                    >
                    > 0.27
                    >
                    > 336
                    >
                    >
                    > 5
                    >
                    > 1255
                    >
                    > 0.29
                    >
                    > 367
                    >
                    >
                    > 6
                    >
                    > 1248
                    >
                    > 0.32
                    >
                    > 402
                    >
                    >
                    > 7
                    >
                    > 1242
                    >
                    > 0.35
                    >
                    > 440
                    >
                    >
                    > 8
                    >
                    > 1236
                    >
                    > 0.39
                    >
                    > 482
                    >
                    >
                    > 9
                    >
                    > 1230
                    >
                    > 0.43
                    >
                    > 527
                    >
                    >
                    > 10
                    >
                    > 1224
                    >
                    > 0.47
                    >
                    > 577
                    >
                    >
                    > 11
                    >
                    > 1217
                    >
                    > 0.52
                    >
                    > 632
                    >
                    >
                    > 12
                    >
                    > 1211
                    >
                    > 0.57
                    >
                    > 691
                    >
                    >
                    > 13
                    >
                    > 1205
                    >
                    > 0.63
                    >
                    > 757
                    >
                    >
                    > 14
                    >
                    > 1199
                    >
                    > 0.69
                    >
                    > 828
                    >
                    >
                    > 15
                    >
                    > 1193
                    >
                    > 0.76
                    >
                    > 906
                    >
                    >
                    > 16
                    >
                    > 1187
                    >
                    > 0.84
                    >
                    > 992
                    >
                    >
                    > 17
                    >
                    > 1181
                    >
                    > 0.92
                    >
                    > 1086
                    >
                    >
                    > 18
                    >
                    > 1175
                    >
                    > 1.01
                    >
                    > 1188
                    >
                    >
                    > 19
                    >
                    > 1170
                    >
                    > 1.11
                    >
                    > 1301
                    >
                    >
                    > 20
                    >
                    > 1164
                    >
                    > 1.22
                    >
                    > 1423
                    >
                    >
                    > 21
                    >
                    > 1158
                    >
                    > 1.35
                    >
                    > 1558
                    >
                    >
                    > 22
                    >
                    > 1152
                    >
                    > 1.48
                    >
                    > 1705
                    >
                    >
                    > 23
                    >
                    > 1146
                    >
                    > 1.63
                    >
                    > 1866
                    >
                    >
                    > 24
                    >
                    > 1141
                    >
                    > 1.79
                    >
                    > 2043
                    >
                    >
                    > 25
                    >
                    > 1135
                    >
                    > 1.97
                    >
                    > 2236
                    >


                    No virus found in this incoming message.
                    Checked by AVG.
                    Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1790 - Release Date: 11/15/2008 9:32 AM


                    No virus found in this outgoing message.
                    Checked by AVG.
                    Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1792 - Release Date: 11/16/2008 10:04 AM



                    Don Sandros
                    SandEnergy, LLC


                  • Henry H Haynes
                    Did anyone read the Chronicle article this morning about the mini-nuclear plants? They said  they would be about the size of SUVs & cost about $250 million
                    Message 9 of 19 , Nov 17, 2008
                      Did anyone read the Chronicle article this morning about the mini-nuclear plants? They said  they would be about the size of SUVs & cost about $250 million each.  But, they would power about 100,000 (?) homes, so that's not bad.  Technical articles like this in newspapers are notoriously wrong, though.

                      HHH

                      --- On Mon, 11/17/08, Don Sandros <don@...> wrote:
                      From: Don Sandros <don@...>
                      Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                      Date: Monday, November 17, 2008, 10:20 AM

                      All: 

                      Excel spread sheet showing the national trends in kW rates since 1960-2007 from DOE....In 1960 national residential rates were @ 2.6 cents and 2007 are 10.64 cents according to DOE....

                      don

                      ----- Original Message -----
                      From: "Henry Haynes"
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                      Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                      Date: Sun, 16 Nov 2008 08:15:05 -0600

                      We were on the verge of putting in a PV system, so I ran what you might call a “real time” spreadsheet.  I’ll say up front that every system is going to be different.  I factored in the 30% tax credit, the financing I had arranged, etc.  The financing (an LOC) was set for a 15 year payout at ??% (I don’t have my data in front of me.) to start at a time of my choosing.  I planned to pay an arbitrary monthly payment until I received the tax credit (taken all the first year) & then start the 15 year payout.  This means I would be paying over a total of about 16-17 years.  During that time the amount I would be paying for the PV portion of my electricity would average about $0.41/kwh.  Of course the PV electricity after the payout would be “free” based on this approach, but we’re at the age that we might not benefit much from this “free” period.  My figures could easily be used to justify putting in a system now, particularly if you factor in the predicted increase in electric rates (an unknown).  We will probably put in a system eventually….just no right now.

                       

                      I’ve got to go to church…..more later….

                       

                      HHH

                       


                      From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Jay Ring
                      Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2008 10:46 PM
                      To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                      Subject: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                       

                      I agree that neglecting the capital cost is a major omission. I
                      hadn't thought of insurance, but that seems significant too.

                      However, I seem to remember that the increased value is exempt from
                      property tax (in Texas ). So that's not too bad.

                      I also agree that 4% is not bad considering how risk free it is.
                      However, it's not -entirely- risk free - if there is a decrease in the
                      price of electricity instead of the assumed increase then you have
                      pretty significant risk. It's up to you to decide how likely you
                      think that situation is; there is really no accurate way to predict
                      that 25 years into the future. Most prices fall over the long run,
                      but non-renewable resources can act rise. Since energy can be
                      generated by renewable and non-renewable means - it's anyone's guess!

                      --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > Chris,
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25
                      > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                      > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
                      property taxes,
                      > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
                      BTW, I
                      > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
                      > yesterday (for Brazoria County ), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
                      >
                      >
                      > Robert Johnston
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf
                      Of Chris
                      > Boyer
                      > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
                      > To: HREG
                      > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
                      was part
                      > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for solar
                      > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
                      owners
                      > in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is
                      comparable
                      > to buying electricity from your utility company.
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Here's the math (simple version):
                      >
                      > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
                      >
                      > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
                      >
                      > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
                      >
                      > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over
                      25 years
                      >
                      > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
                      >
                      > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Example:
                      >
                      > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
                      >
                      > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Here's the math another way (complex version)
                      >
                      > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
                      If I had
                      > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get a
                      > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
                      investment at
                      > this time, let me know!).
                      >
                      > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
                      number)
                      > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on our
                      > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
                      rates are
                      > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
                      increased at
                      > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade. If you
                      > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
                      (0.5%
                      > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
                      still come
                      > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
                      return;
                      > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
                      system if
                      > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the nation
                      toward
                      > sustainability.
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
                      same rate
                      > that you expect electricity to escalate.
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
                      >
                      > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to incomprehensible
                      > jibberish).
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Year
                      >
                      > Generation
                      >
                      > (kWh/yr)
                      >
                      > Elect
                      >
                      > ($/kWh)
                      >
                      > $Solar Revenue
                      >
                      >
                      > 0
                      >
                      > 0
                      >
                      > 0.20
                      >
                      > -8000
                      >
                      >
                      > 1
                      >
                      > 1280
                      >
                      > 0.20
                      >
                      > 2656
                      >
                      >
                      > 2
                      >
                      > 1274
                      >
                      > 0.22
                      >
                      > 280
                      >
                      >
                      > 3
                      >
                      > 1267
                      >
                      > 0.24
                      >
                      > 307
                      >
                      >
                      > 4
                      >
                      > 1261
                      >
                      > 0.27
                      >
                      > 336
                      >
                      >
                      > 5
                      >
                      > 1255
                      >
                      > 0.29
                      >
                      > 367
                      >
                      >
                      > 6
                      >
                      > 1248
                      >
                      > 0.32
                      >
                      > 402
                      >
                      >
                      > 7
                      >
                      > 1242
                      >
                      > 0.35
                      >
                      > 440
                      >
                      >
                      > 8
                      >
                      > 1236
                      >
                      > 0.39
                      >
                      > 482
                      >
                      >
                      > 9
                      >
                      > 1230
                      >
                      > 0.43
                      >
                      > 527
                      >
                      >
                      > 10
                      >
                      > 1224
                      >
                      > 0.47
                      >
                      > 577
                      >
                      >
                      > 11
                      >
                      > 1217
                      >
                      > 0.52
                      >
                      > 632
                      >
                      >
                      > 12
                      >
                      > 1211
                      >
                      > 0.57
                      >
                      > 691
                      >
                      >
                      > 13
                      >
                      > 1205
                      >
                      > 0.63
                      >
                      > 757
                      >
                      >
                      > 14
                      >
                      > 1199
                      >
                      > 0.69
                      >
                      > 828
                      >
                      >
                      > 15
                      >
                      > 1193
                      >
                      > 0.76
                      >
                      > 906
                      >
                      >
                      > 16
                      >
                      > 1187
                      >
                      > 0.84
                      >
                      > 992
                      >
                      >
                      > 17
                      >
                      > 1181
                      >
                      > 0.92
                      >
                      > 1086
                      >
                      >
                      > 18
                      >
                      > 1175
                      >
                      > 1.01
                      >
                      > 1188
                      >
                      >
                      > 19
                      >
                      > 1170
                      >
                      > 1.11
                      >
                      > 1301
                      >
                      >
                      > 20
                      >
                      > 1164
                      >
                      > 1.22
                      >
                      > 1423
                      >
                      >
                      > 21
                      >
                      > 1158
                      >
                      > 1.35
                      >
                      > 1558
                      >
                      >
                      > 22
                      >
                      > 1152
                      >
                      > 1.48
                      >
                      > 1705
                      >
                      >
                      > 23
                      >
                      > 1146
                      >
                      > 1.63
                      >
                      > 1866
                      >
                      >
                      > 24
                      >
                      > 1141
                      >
                      > 1.79
                      >
                      > 2043
                      >
                      >
                      > 25
                      >
                      > 1135
                      >
                      > 1.97
                      >
                      > 2236
                      >


                      No virus found in this incoming message.
                      Checked by AVG.
                      Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1790 - Release Date: 11/15/2008 9:32 AM


                      No virus found in this outgoing message.
                      Checked by AVG.
                      Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1792 - Release Date: 11/16/2008 10:04 AM



                      Don Sandros
                      SandEnergy, LLC


                    • Robert Johnston
                      Very informative chart, thanks! One point I would add is that the GDP deflator http://cost.jsc.nasa.gov/inflateGDP.html
                      Message 10 of 19 , Nov 17, 2008

                        Very informative chart, thanks! 

                         

                        One point I would add is that the GDP deflator http://cost.jsc.nasa.gov/inflateGDP.html for the same 1960-2007 period was 433% change, so the increase in cost of electricity was similar to the change in nominal GDP over the same period.  If you look at CPI (http://data.bls.gov/cgi-bin/cpicalc.pl ) the increase in CPI was 700%.  Thus, electricity has risen relatively slowly compared to the cost of the overall basket of goods that CPI is calculated on.

                         

                        What this implies to me is that if stock prices continue to rise faster than inflation over the next 25 years as they have over long periods in the past (and today being a potentially great <low cost> entry point), one would be better off investing $50,000 in a diversified stock portfolio than investing it in solar panels to replace/augment utility-provided electricity.  The stocks would rise faster than the cost of utility-provided electricity, if the trend in your spreadsheet continues.  Of course, “past performance is no guarantee of future results”, as financial advisors always say, and that would be true of both stocks and electricity prices. 

                         

                        I think investing in solar electricity is “cool” and has environmental benefits, but except for special situations, is still not cost-competitive with utility-provided electricity.  I think solar will take off without rebates once the technology is developed to be truly cost-competitive (and not just when energy prices are an cyclical highs).

                         

                        Robert

                         

                         

                         

                        From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Don Sandros
                        Sent: Monday, November 17, 2008 10:21 AM
                        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                         

                        All: 

                        Excel spread sheet showing the national trends in kW rates since 1960-2007 from DOE....In 1960 national residential rates were @ 2.6 cents and 2007 are 10.64 cents according to DOE....

                        don

                        ----- Original Message -----
                        From: "Henry Haynes"
                        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                        Date: Sun, 16 Nov 2008 08:15:05 -0600

                        We were on the verge of putting in a PV system, so I ran what you might call a “real time” spreadsheet.  I’ll say up front that every system is going to be different.  I factored in the 30% tax credit, the financing I had arranged, etc.  The financing (an LOC) was set for a 15 year payout at ??% (I don’t have my data in front of me.) to start at a time of my choosing.  I planned to pay an arbitrary monthly payment until I received the tax credit (taken all the first year) & then start the 15 year payout.  This means I would be paying over a total of about 16-17 years.  During that time the amount I would be paying for the PV portion of my electricity would average about $0.41/kwh.  Of course the PV electricity after the payout would be “free” based on this approach, but we’re at the age that we might not benefit much from this “free” period.  My figures could easily be used to justify putting in a system now, particularly if you factor in the predicted increase in electric rates (an unknown).  We will probably put in a system eventually….just no right now.

                         

                        I’ve got to go to church…..more later….

                         

                        HHH

                         


                        From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Jay Ring
                        Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2008 10:46 PM
                        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                         

                        I agree that neglecting the capital cost is a major omission. I
                        hadn't thought of insurance, but that seems significant too.

                        However, I seem to remember that the increased value is exempt from
                        property tax (in Texas). So that's not too bad.

                        I also agree that 4% is not bad considering how risk free it is.
                        However, it's not -entirely- risk free - if there is a decrease in the
                        price of electricity instead of the assumed increase then you have
                        pretty significant risk. It's up to you to decide how likely you
                        think that situation is; there is really no accurate way to predict
                        that 25 years into the future. Most prices fall over the long run,
                        but non-renewable resources can act rise. Since energy can be
                        generated by renewable and non-renewable means - it's anyone's guess!

                        --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > Chris,
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25
                        > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                        > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
                        property taxes,
                        > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
                        BTW, I
                        > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
                        > yesterday (for Brazoria County), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
                        >
                        >
                        > Robert Johnston
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                        Of Chris
                        > Boyer
                        > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
                        > To: HREG
                        > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
                        was part
                        > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for solar
                        > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
                        owners
                        > in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is
                        comparable
                        > to buying electricity from your utility company.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Here's the math (simple version):
                        >
                        > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
                        >
                        > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
                        >
                        > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
                        >
                        > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over
                        25 years
                        >
                        > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
                        >
                        > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Example:
                        >
                        > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
                        >
                        > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Here's the math another way (complex version)
                        >
                        > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
                        If I had
                        > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get a
                        > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
                        investment at
                        > this time, let me know!).
                        >
                        > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
                        number)
                        > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on our
                        > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
                        rates are
                        > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
                        increased at
                        > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade. If you
                        > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
                        (0.5%
                        > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
                        still come
                        > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
                        return;
                        > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
                        system if
                        > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the nation
                        toward
                        > sustainability.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
                        same rate
                        > that you expect electricity to escalate.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
                        >
                        > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to incomprehensible
                        > jibberish).
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        >
                        > Year
                        >
                        > Generation
                        >
                        > (kWh/yr)
                        >
                        > Elect
                        >
                        > ($/kWh)
                        >
                        > $Solar Revenue
                        >
                        >
                        > 0
                        >
                        > 0
                        >
                        > 0.20
                        >
                        > -8000
                        >
                        >
                        > 1
                        >
                        > 1280
                        >
                        > 0.20
                        >
                        > 2656
                        >
                        >
                        > 2
                        >
                        > 1274
                        >
                        > 0.22
                        >
                        > 280
                        >
                        >
                        > 3
                        >
                        > 1267
                        >
                        > 0.24
                        >
                        > 307
                        >
                        >
                        > 4
                        >
                        > 1261
                        >
                        > 0.27
                        >
                        > 336
                        >
                        >
                        > 5
                        >
                        > 1255
                        >
                        > 0.29
                        >
                        > 367
                        >
                        >
                        > 6
                        >
                        > 1248
                        >
                        > 0.32
                        >
                        > 402
                        >
                        >
                        > 7
                        >
                        > 1242
                        >
                        > 0.35
                        >
                        > 440
                        >
                        >
                        > 8
                        >
                        > 1236
                        >
                        > 0.39
                        >
                        > 482
                        >
                        >
                        > 9
                        >
                        > 1230
                        >
                        > 0.43
                        >
                        > 527
                        >
                        >
                        > 10
                        >
                        > 1224
                        >
                        > 0.47
                        >
                        > 577
                        >
                        >
                        > 11
                        >
                        > 1217
                        >
                        > 0.52
                        >
                        > 632
                        >
                        >
                        > 12
                        >
                        > 1211
                        >
                        > 0.57
                        >
                        > 691
                        >
                        >
                        > 13
                        >
                        > 1205
                        >
                        > 0.63
                        >
                        > 757
                        >
                        >
                        > 14
                        >
                        > 1199
                        >
                        > 0.69
                        >
                        > 828
                        >
                        >
                        > 15
                        >
                        > 1193
                        >
                        > 0.76
                        >
                        > 906
                        >
                        >
                        > 16
                        >
                        > 1187
                        >
                        > 0.84
                        >
                        > 992
                        >
                        >
                        > 17
                        >
                        > 1181
                        >
                        > 0.92
                        >
                        > 1086
                        >
                        >
                        > 18
                        >
                        > 1175
                        >
                        > 1.01
                        >
                        > 1188
                        >
                        >
                        > 19
                        >
                        > 1170
                        >
                        > 1.11
                        >
                        > 1301
                        >
                        >
                        > 20
                        >
                        > 1164
                        >
                        > 1.22
                        >
                        > 1423
                        >
                        >
                        > 21
                        >
                        > 1158
                        >
                        > 1.35
                        >
                        > 1558
                        >
                        >
                        > 22
                        >
                        > 1152
                        >
                        > 1.48
                        >
                        > 1705
                        >
                        >
                        > 23
                        >
                        > 1146
                        >
                        > 1.63
                        >
                        > 1866
                        >
                        >
                        > 24
                        >
                        > 1141
                        >
                        > 1.79
                        >
                        > 2043
                        >
                        >
                        > 25
                        >
                        > 1135
                        >
                        > 1.97
                        >
                        > 2236
                        >

                         

                        No virus found in this incoming message.
                        Checked by AVG.
                        Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1790 - Release Date: 11/15/2008 9:32 AM

                         

                        No virus found in this outgoing message.
                        Checked by AVG.
                        Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1792 - Release Date: 11/16/2008 10:04 AM

                         

                        Don Sandros
                        SandEnergy, LLC

                         

                      • Kevin Conlin
                        I read it, but thought they were $25M and powered 10,000 homes. Kevin Conlin Solarcraft, Inc. 4007-C Greenbriar Drive Stafford, TX 77477 Local (281) 340-1224
                        Message 11 of 19 , Nov 17, 2008

                          I read it, but thought they were $25M and powered 10,000 homes.

                           

                          Kevin Conlin

                          Solarcraft, Inc.

                          4007-C Greenbriar Drive

                          Stafford, TX 77477

                          Local (281) 340-1224

                          Toll Free (877) 340-1224

                          Fax (281) 340-1230

                          Cell (281) 960-8979

                          kconlin@...

                          www.solarcraft.net

                           


                          From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups.com ] On Behalf Of Henry H Haynes
                          Sent: Monday, November 17, 2008 10:43 AM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                          Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                           

                          Did anyone read the Chronicle article this morning about the mini-nuclear plants? They said  they would be about the size of SUVs & cost about $250 million each.  But, they would power about 100,000 (?) homes, so that's not bad.  Technical articles like this in newspapers are notoriously wrong, though.

                          HHH

                          --- On Mon, 11/17/08, Don Sandros <don@sandenergy. net> wrote:

                          From: Don Sandros <don@sandenergy. net>
                          Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          Date: Monday, November 17, 2008, 10:20 AM

                          All: 

                          Excel spread sheet showing the national trends in kW rates since 1960-2007 from DOE....In 1960 national residential rates were @ 2.6 cents and 2007 are 10.64 cents according to DOE....

                          don

                          ----- Original Message -----
                          From: "Henry Haynes"
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                          Date: Sun, 16 Nov 2008 08:15:05 -0600

                          We were on the verge of putting in a PV system, so I ran what you might call a “real time” spreadsheet.  I’ll say up front that every system is going to be different.  I factored in the 30% tax credit, the financing I had arranged, etc.  The financing (an LOC) was set for a 15 year payout at ??% (I don’t have my data in front of me.) to start at a time of my choosing.  I planned to pay an arbitrary monthly payment until I received the tax credit (taken all the first year) & then start the 15 year payout.  This means I would be paying over a total of about 16-17 years.  During that time the amount I would be paying for the PV portion of my electricity would average about $0.41/kwh.  Of course the PV electricity after the payout would be “free” based on this approach, but we’re at the age that we might not benefit much from this “free” period.  My figures could easily be used to justify putting in a system now, particularly if you factor in the predicted increase in electric rates (an unknown).  We will probably put in a system eventually….just no right now.

                           

                          I’ve got to go to church…..more later….

                           

                          HHH

                           


                          From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Jay Ring
                          Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2008 10:46 PM
                          To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                          Subject: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                           

                          I agree that neglecting the capital cost is a major omission. I
                          hadn't thought of insurance, but that seems significant too.

                          However, I seem to remember that the increased value is exempt from
                          property tax (in Texas ). So that's not too bad.

                          I also agree that 4% is not bad considering how risk free it is.
                          However, it's not -entirely- risk free - if there is a decrease in the
                          price of electricity instead of the assumed increase then you have
                          pretty significant risk. It's up to you to decide how likely you
                          think that situation is; there is really no accurate way to predict
                          that 25 years into the future. Most prices fall over the long run,
                          but non-renewable resources can act rise. Since energy can be
                          generated by renewable and non-renewable means - it's anyone's guess!

                          --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:

                          >
                          > Chris,
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25
                          > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                          > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
                          property taxes,
                          > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
                          BTW, I
                          > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
                          > yesterday (for Brazoria
                          County ), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
                          >
                          >
                          > Robert Johnston
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > From: hreg@yahoogroups.
                          com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf
                          Of Chris
                          > Boyer
                          > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
                          > To: HREG
                          > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
                          was part
                          > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for solar
                          > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
                          owners
                          > in Houston
                          because it now means that buying solar electricity is
                          comparable
                          > to buying electricity from your utility company.
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Here's the math (simple version):
                          >
                          > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
                          >
                          > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
                          >
                          > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
                          >
                          > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in
                          w:st="on">Houston over
                          25 years
                          >
                          > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
                          >
                          > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Example:
                          >
                          > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
                          >
                          > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Here's the math another way (complex version)
                          >
                          > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
                          If I had
                          > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get a
                          > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
                          investment at
                          > this time, let me know!).
                          >
                          > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
                          number)
                          > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on our
                          > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
                          rates are
                          > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
                          increased at
                          > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in
                          w:st="on">Texas over the last decade. If you
                          > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
                          (0.5%
                          > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
                          still come
                          > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
                          return;
                          > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
                          system if
                          > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the nation
                          toward
                          > sustainability.
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
                          same rate
                          > that you expect electricity to escalate.
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
                          >
                          > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to incomprehensible
                          > jibberish).
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > Year
                          >
                          > Generation
                          >
                          > (kWh/yr)
                          >
                          > Elect
                          >
                          > ($/kWh)
                          >
                          > $Solar Revenue
                          >
                          >
                          > 0
                          >
                          > 0
                          >
                          > 0.20
                          >
                          > -8000
                          >
                          >
                          > 1
                          >
                          > 1280
                          >
                          > 0.20
                          >
                          > 2656
                          >
                          >
                          > 2
                          >
                          > 1274
                          >
                          > 0.22
                          >
                          > 280
                          >
                          >
                          > 3
                          >
                          > 1267
                          >
                          > 0.24
                          >
                          > 307
                          >
                          >
                          > 4
                          >
                          > 1261
                          >
                          > 0.27
                          >
                          > 336
                          >
                          >
                          > 5
                          >
                          > 1255
                          >
                          > 0.29
                          >
                          > 367
                          >
                          >
                          > 6
                          >
                          > 1248
                          >
                          > 0.32
                          >
                          > 402
                          >
                          >
                          > 7
                          >
                          > 1242
                          >
                          > 0.35
                          >
                          > 440
                          >
                          >
                          > 8
                          >
                          > 1236
                          >
                          > 0.39
                          >
                          > 482
                          >
                          >
                          > 9
                          >
                          > 1230
                          >
                          > 0.43
                          >
                          > 527
                          >
                          >
                          > 10
                          >
                          > 1224
                          >
                          > 0.47
                          >
                          > 577
                          >
                          >
                          > 11
                          >
                          > 1217
                          >
                          > 0.52
                          >
                          > 632
                          >
                          >
                          > 12
                          >
                          > 1211
                          >
                          > 0.57
                          >
                          > 691
                          >
                          >
                          > 13
                          >
                          > 1205
                          >
                          > 0.63
                          >
                          > 757
                          >
                          >
                          > 14
                          >
                          > 1199
                          >
                          > 0.69
                          >
                          > 828
                          >
                          >
                          > 15
                          >
                          > 1193
                          >
                          > 0.76
                          >
                          > 906
                          >
                          >
                          > 16
                          >
                          > 1187
                          >
                          > 0.84
                          >
                          > 992
                          >
                          >
                          > 17
                          >
                          > 1181
                          >
                          > 0.92
                          >
                          > 1086
                          >
                          >
                          > 18
                          >
                          > 1175
                          >
                          > 1.01
                          >
                          > 1188
                          >
                          >
                          > 19
                          >
                          > 1170
                          >
                          > 1.11
                          >
                          > 1301
                          >
                          >
                          > 20
                          >
                          > 1164
                          >
                          > 1.22
                          >
                          > 1423
                          >
                          >
                          > 21
                          >
                          > 1158
                          >
                          > 1.35
                          >
                          > 1558
                          >
                          >
                          > 22
                          >
                          > 1152
                          >
                          > 1.48
                          >
                          > 1705
                          >
                          >
                          > 23
                          >
                          > 1146
                          >
                          > 1.63
                          >
                          > 1866
                          >
                          >
                          > 24
                          >
                          > 1141
                          >
                          > 1.79
                          >
                          > 2043
                          >
                          >
                          > 25
                          >
                          > 1135
                          >
                          > 1.97
                          >
                          > 2236
                          >

                           

                          No virus found in this incoming message.
                          Checked by AVG.
                          Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1790 - Release Date: 11/15/2008 9:32 AM

                           

                          No virus found in this outgoing message.
                          Checked by AVG.
                          Version: 7.5.549 / Virus Database: 270.9.4/1792 - Release Date: 11/16/2008 10:04 AM

                           

                          Don Sandros
                          SandEnergy, LLC

                           

                        • Henry H Haynes
                          You re probably right.  My memory lost the decimal point. One of my first thoughts was about how they are going to maintain security & monitor the location of
                          Message 12 of 19 , Nov 17, 2008
                            You're probably right.  My memory lost the decimal point.

                            One of my first thoughts was about how they are going to maintain security & monitor the location of these small units scattered across the country.

                            On the positive side, these units could potentially push the cost of electricity down w/ such a small capital investment.

                            HHH

                            --- On Mon, 11/17/08, Kevin Conlin <kconlin@...> wrote:
                            From: Kevin Conlin <kconlin@...>
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                            Date: Monday, November 17, 2008, 12:29 PM

                            I read it, but thought they were $25M and powered 10,000 homes.

                             

                            Kevin Conlin

                            Solarcraft, Inc.

                            4007-C Greenbriar Drive

                            Stafford, TX 77477

                            Local (281) 340-1224

                            Toll Free (877) 340-1224

                            Fax (281) 340-1230

                            Cell (281) 960-8979

                            kconlin@solarcraft. net

                            www.solarcraft. net

                             


                            From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Henry H Haynes
                            Sent: Monday, November 17, 2008 10:43 AM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                             

                            Did anyone read the Chronicle article this morning about the mini-nuclear plants? They said  they would be about the size of SUVs & cost about $250 million each.  But, they would power about 100,000 (?) homes, so that's not bad.  Technical articles like this in newspapers are notoriously wrong, though.

                            HHH

                            --- On Mon, 11/17/08, Don Sandros <don@sandenergy. net> wrote:

                            From: Don Sandros <don@sandenergy. net>
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                            Date: Monday, November 17, 2008, 10:20 AM

                            All: 

                            Excel spread sheet showing the national trends in kW rates since 1960-2007 from DOE....In 1960 national residential rates were @ 2.6 cents and 2007 are 10.64 cents according to DOE....

                            don

                            ----- Original Message -----
                            From: "Henry Haynes"
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                            Subject: RE: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                            Date: Sun, 16 Nov 2008 08:15:05 -0600

                            We were on the verge of putting in a PV system, so I ran what you might call a “real time” spreadsheet.  I’ll say up front that every system is going to be different.  I factored in the 30% tax credit, the financing I had arranged, etc.  The financing (an LOC) was set for a 15 year payout at ??% (I don’t have my data in front of me.) to start at a time of my choosing.  I planned to pay an arbitrary monthly payment until I received the tax credit (taken all the first year) & then start the 15 year payout.  This means I would be paying over a total of about 16-17 years.  During that time the amount I would be paying for the PV portion of my electricity would average about $0.41/kwh.  Of course the PV electricity after the payout would be “free” based on this approach, but we’re at the age that we might not benefit much from this “free” period.  My figures could easily be used to justify putting in a system now, particularly if you factor in the predicted increase in electric rates (an unknown).  We will probably put in a system eventually….just no right now.

                             

                            I’ve got to go to church…..more later….

                             

                            HHH

                             


                            From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto: hreg@yahoogroups. com ] On Behalf Of Jay Ring
                            Sent: Saturday, November 15, 2008 10:46 PM
                            To: hreg@yahoogroups. com
                            Subject: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                             

                            I agree that neglecting the capital cost is a major omission. I
                            hadn't thought of insurance, but that seems significant too.

                            However, I seem to remember that the increased value is exempt from
                            property tax (in Texas ). So that's not too bad.

                            I also agree that 4% is not bad considering how risk free it is.
                            However, it's not -entirely- risk free - if there is a decrease in the
                            price of electricity instead of the assumed increase then you have
                            pretty significant risk. It's up to you to decide how likely you
                            think that situation is; there is really no accurate way to predict
                            that 25 years into the future. Most prices fall over the long run,
                            but non-renewable resources can act rise. Since energy can be
                            generated by renewable and non-renewable means - it's anyone's guess!

                            --- In hreg@yahoogroups. com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > Chris,
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase over 25
                            > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                            > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
                            property taxes,
                            > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
                            BTW, I
                            > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
                            > yesterday (for Brazoria County ), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
                            >
                            >
                            > Robert Johnston
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > From: hreg@yahoogroups. com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups. com] On Behalf
                            Of Chris
                            > Boyer
                            > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
                            > To: HREG
                            > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
                            was part
                            > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for solar
                            > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
                            owners
                            > in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is
                            comparable
                            > to buying electricity from your utility company.
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Here's the math (simple version):
                            >
                            > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
                            >
                            > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
                            >
                            > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
                            >
                            > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over
                            25 years
                            >
                            > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
                            >
                            > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Example:
                            >
                            > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
                            >
                            > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Here's the math another way (complex version)
                            >
                            > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
                            If I had
                            > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get a
                            > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
                            investment at
                            > this time, let me know!).
                            >
                            > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
                            number)
                            > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on our
                            > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
                            rates are
                            > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
                            increased at
                            > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade. If you
                            > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
                            (0.5%
                            > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
                            still come
                            > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
                            return;
                            > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
                            system if
                            > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the nation
                            toward
                            > sustainability.
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
                            same rate
                            > that you expect electricity to escalate.
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
                            >
                            > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to incomprehensible
                            > jibberish).
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > Year
                            >
                            > Generation
                            >
                            > (kWh/yr)
                            >
                            > Elect
                            >
                            > ($/kWh)
                            >
                            > $Solar Revenue
                            >
                            >
                            > 0
                            >
                            > 0
                            >
                            > 0.20
                            >
                            > -8000
                            >
                            >
                            > 1
                            >
                            > 1280
                            >
                            > 0.20
                            >
                            > 2656
                            >
                            >
                            > 2
                            >
                            > 1274
                            >
                            > 0.22
                            >
                            > 280
                            >
                            >
                            > 3
                            >
                            > 1267
                            >
                            > 0.24
                            >
                            > 307
                            >
                            >
                            > 4
                            >
                            > 1261
                            >
                            > 0.27
                            >
                            > 336
                            >
                            >
                            > 5
                            >
                            > 1255
                            >
                            > 0.29
                            >
                            > 367
                            >
                            >
                            > 6
                            >
                            > 1248
                            >
                            > 0.32
                            >
                            > 402
                            >
                            >
                            > 7
                            >
                            > 1242
                            >
                            > 0.35
                            >
                            > 440
                            >
                            >
                            > 8
                            >
                            > 1236
                            >
                            > 0.39
                            >
                            > 482
                            >
                            >
                            > 9
                            >
                            > 1230
                            >
                            > 0.43
                            >
                            > 527
                            >
                            >
                            > 10
                            >
                            > 1224
                            >
                            > 0.47
                            >
                            > 577
                            >
                            >
                            > 11
                            >
                            > 1217
                            >
                            > 0.52
                            >
                            > 632
                            >
                            >
                            > 12
                            >
                            > 1211
                            >
                            > 0.57
                            >
                            > 691
                            >
                            >
                            > 13
                            >
                            > 1205
                            >
                            > 0.63
                            >
                            > 757
                            >
                            >
                            > 14
                            >
                            > 1199
                            >
                            > 0.69
                            >
                            > 828
                            >
                            >
                            > 15
                            >
                            > 1193
                            >
                            > 0.76
                            >
                            > 906
                            >
                            >
                            > 16
                            >
                            > 1187
                            >
                            > 0.84
                            >
                            > 992
                            >
                            >
                            > 17
                            >
                            > 1181
                            >
                            > 0.92
                            >
                            > 1086
                            >
                            >
                            > 18
                            >
                            > 1175
                            >
                            > 1.01
                            >
                            > 1188
                            >
                            >
                            > 19
                            >
                            > 1170
                            >
                            > 1.11
                            >
                            > 1301
                            >
                            >
                            > 20
                            >
                            > 1164
                            >
                            > 1.22
                            >
                            > 1423
                            >
                            >
                            > 21
                            >
                            > 1158
                            >
                            > 1.35
                            >
                            > 1558
                            >
                            >
                            > 22
                            >
                            > 1152
                            >
                            > 1.48
                            >
                            > 1705
                            >
                            >
                            > 23
                            >
                            > 1146
                            >
                            > 1.63
                            >
                            > 1866
                            >
                            >
                            > 24
                            >
                            > 1141
                            >
                            > 1.79
                            >
                            > 2043
                            >
                            >
                            > 25
                            >
                            > 1135
                            >
                            > 1.97
                            >
                            > 2236
                            >

                             

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                          • Chris
                            Robert, Your criticism is welcome as it allows us to clear up some questions: 1) The second calculation in the e-mail did include the cost of capital. It
                            Message 13 of 19 , Nov 17, 2008
                              Robert,

                              Your criticism is welcome as it allows us to clear up some questions:
                              1) The second calculation in the e-mail did include the cost of
                              capital. It shows that the cost of capital is on par with the
                              historical increase in electric rates.
                              2) Insurance cost increases are minimum. A few dollars per year.
                              3) There is no property tax on solar equipment.
                              4) There is no maintenance on solar equipment (unless you want to
                              squeeze a little more juice out of them and rinse them every few
                              months).
                              5) Extrapolating historic electric trends assumes there is infinite
                              fossil resources available cheaply (clean, high BTU, close to the
                              surface), which is not the case, so logic tells us fossil costs will
                              continue to rise exponentially (although they went out of control in
                              the last year and are now re-adjusting). Or, it assumes that an
                              alternative solution will arise and reach mass-production economic
                              efficency (which only happens with an initial investment).

                              There are plenty of reasons to have a solar system (or other
                              renewable power source). And if you don't want to be part of the
                              American energy solution, that is your choice.

                              -Chris

                              You can hang with the dinasaurs, or evolve with the survivors.


                              --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:
                              >
                              > Chris,
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase
                              over 25
                              > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                              > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
                              property taxes,
                              > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
                              BTW, I
                              > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
                              > yesterday (for Brazoria County), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
                              >
                              >
                              > Robert Johnston
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                              Of Chris
                              > Boyer
                              > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
                              > To: HREG
                              > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
                              was part
                              > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for
                              solar
                              > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
                              owners
                              > in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is
                              comparable
                              > to buying electricity from your utility company.
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Here's the math (simple version):
                              >
                              > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
                              >
                              > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
                              >
                              > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
                              >
                              > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over
                              25 years
                              >
                              > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
                              >
                              > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Example:
                              >
                              > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
                              >
                              > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Here's the math another way (complex version)
                              >
                              > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
                              If I had
                              > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get
                              a
                              > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
                              investment at
                              > this time, let me know!).
                              >
                              > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
                              number)
                              > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on
                              our
                              > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
                              rates are
                              > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
                              increased at
                              > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade. If
                              you
                              > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
                              (0.5%
                              > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
                              still come
                              > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
                              return;
                              > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
                              system if
                              > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the
                              nation toward
                              > sustainability.
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
                              same rate
                              > that you expect electricity to escalate.
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
                              >
                              > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to
                              incomprehensible
                              > jibberish).
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              >
                              > Year
                              >
                              > Generation
                              >
                              > (kWh/yr)
                              >
                              > Elect
                              >
                              > ($/kWh)
                              >
                              > $Solar Revenue
                              >
                              >
                              > 0
                              >
                              > 0
                              >
                              > 0.20
                              >
                              > -8000
                              >
                              >
                              > 1
                              >
                              > 1280
                              >
                              > 0.20
                              >
                              > 2656
                              >
                              >
                              > 2
                              >
                              > 1274
                              >
                              > 0.22
                              >
                              > 280
                              >
                              >
                              > 3
                              >
                              > 1267
                              >
                              > 0.24
                              >
                              > 307
                              >
                              >
                              > 4
                              >
                              > 1261
                              >
                              > 0.27
                              >
                              > 336
                              >
                              >
                              > 5
                              >
                              > 1255
                              >
                              > 0.29
                              >
                              > 367
                              >
                              >
                              > 6
                              >
                              > 1248
                              >
                              > 0.32
                              >
                              > 402
                              >
                              >
                              > 7
                              >
                              > 1242
                              >
                              > 0.35
                              >
                              > 440
                              >
                              >
                              > 8
                              >
                              > 1236
                              >
                              > 0.39
                              >
                              > 482
                              >
                              >
                              > 9
                              >
                              > 1230
                              >
                              > 0.43
                              >
                              > 527
                              >
                              >
                              > 10
                              >
                              > 1224
                              >
                              > 0.47
                              >
                              > 577
                              >
                              >
                              > 11
                              >
                              > 1217
                              >
                              > 0.52
                              >
                              > 632
                              >
                              >
                              > 12
                              >
                              > 1211
                              >
                              > 0.57
                              >
                              > 691
                              >
                              >
                              > 13
                              >
                              > 1205
                              >
                              > 0.63
                              >
                              > 757
                              >
                              >
                              > 14
                              >
                              > 1199
                              >
                              > 0.69
                              >
                              > 828
                              >
                              >
                              > 15
                              >
                              > 1193
                              >
                              > 0.76
                              >
                              > 906
                              >
                              >
                              > 16
                              >
                              > 1187
                              >
                              > 0.84
                              >
                              > 992
                              >
                              >
                              > 17
                              >
                              > 1181
                              >
                              > 0.92
                              >
                              > 1086
                              >
                              >
                              > 18
                              >
                              > 1175
                              >
                              > 1.01
                              >
                              > 1188
                              >
                              >
                              > 19
                              >
                              > 1170
                              >
                              > 1.11
                              >
                              > 1301
                              >
                              >
                              > 20
                              >
                              > 1164
                              >
                              > 1.22
                              >
                              > 1423
                              >
                              >
                              > 21
                              >
                              > 1158
                              >
                              > 1.35
                              >
                              > 1558
                              >
                              >
                              > 22
                              >
                              > 1152
                              >
                              > 1.48
                              >
                              > 1705
                              >
                              >
                              > 23
                              >
                              > 1146
                              >
                              > 1.63
                              >
                              > 1866
                              >
                              >
                              > 24
                              >
                              > 1141
                              >
                              > 1.79
                              >
                              > 2043
                              >
                              >
                              > 25
                              >
                              > 1135
                              >
                              > 1.97
                              >
                              > 2236
                              >
                            • Gary Beck
                              I would venture that many Houston -REG members may have come from Houston energy, oil, gas, or chemical industries. Many probably worked either directly
                              Message 14 of 19 , Nov 17, 2008

                                I would venture that many 'Houston'-REG members may have come from Houston energy, oil, gas, or chemical industries. Many probably worked either directly around energy technologies, or formed knowledgable realistic energy opinions just by being here. With all these experts we can have some fun and informative debates.

                                 

                                But it’s a gamble If you are trying to predict the future. Will Spark run out of juice in 2010? Or will someone turn my home's 50 lbs of weekly solid waste stew into a 20 gallons of butanol in 2012?  Maybe we should check with a gambling expert. How do Las Vegas odds maker lists whether fossil fuels will dramatically rise in the next two decade, or not?

                                 

                                I think they might note that the huge life style changing populations of China, India, and emerging North Africa may want food, clean water, lighting, heating, cooling, and transportation, just like we do. And then energy will just flow to the highest bidder. I'm betting those bookies would set their odds based on these clear and unarguable facts.  So…the wheel is spinning,…time to place your bets!

                                 

                                 

                                From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Chris
                                Sent: Monday, November 17, 2008 9:47 PM
                                To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                                Subject: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                                 

                                Robert,

                                Your criticism is welcome as it allows us to clear up some questions:
                                1) The second calculation in the e-mail did include the cost of
                                capital. It shows that the cost of capital is on par with the
                                historical increase in electric rates.
                                2) Insurance cost increases are minimum. A few dollars per year.
                                3) There is no property tax on solar equipment.
                                4) There is no maintenance on solar equipment (unless you want to
                                squeeze a little more juice out of them and rinse them every few
                                months).
                                5) Extrapolating historic electric trends assumes there is infinite
                                fossil resources available cheaply (clean, high BTU, close to the
                                surface), which is not the case, so logic tells us fossil costs will
                                continue to rise exponentially (although they went out of control in
                                the last year and are now re-adjusting). Or, it assumes that an
                                alternative solution will arise and reach mass-production economic
                                efficiency (which only happens with an initial investment).

                                There are plenty of reasons to have a solar system (or other
                                renewable power source). And if you don't want to be part of the
                                American energy solution, that is your choice.

                                -Chris

                                You can hang with the dinosaurs, or evolve with the survivors.

                                --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:

                                >
                                > Chris,
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase
                                over 25
                                > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                                > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
                                property taxes,
                                > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
                                BTW, I
                                > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
                                > yesterday (for Brazoria County), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
                                >
                                >
                                > Robert Johnston
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > From: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                                [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                                Of Chris
                                > Boyer
                                > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
                                > To: HREG
                                > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
                                was part
                                > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for
                                solar
                                > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
                                owners
                                > in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is
                                comparable
                                > to buying electricity from your utility company.
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > Here's the math (simple version):
                                >
                                > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
                                >
                                > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
                                >
                                > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
                                >
                                > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over
                                25 years
                                >
                                > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
                                >
                                > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > Example:
                                >
                                > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
                                >
                                > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > Here's the math another way (complex version)
                                >
                                > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
                                If I had
                                > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get
                                a
                                > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
                                investment at
                                > this time, let me know!).
                                >
                                > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
                                number)
                                > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on
                                our
                                > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
                                rates are
                                > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
                                increased at
                                > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade. If
                                you
                                > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
                                (0.5%
                                > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
                                still come
                                > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
                                return;
                                > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
                                system if
                                > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the
                                nation toward
                                > sustainability.
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
                                same rate
                                > that you expect electricity to escalate.
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
                                >
                                > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to
                                incomprehensible
                                > jibberish).
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > Year
                                >
                                > Generation
                                >
                                > (kWh/yr)
                                >
                                > Elect
                                >
                                > ($/kWh)
                                >
                                > $Solar Revenue
                                >
                                >
                                > 0
                                >
                                > 0
                                >
                                > 0.20
                                >
                                > -8000
                                >
                                >
                                > 1
                                >
                                > 1280
                                >
                                > 0.20
                                >
                                > 2656
                                >
                                >
                                > 2
                                >
                                > 1274
                                >
                                > 0.22
                                >
                                > 280
                                >
                                >
                                > 3
                                >
                                > 1267
                                >
                                > 0.24
                                >
                                > 307
                                >
                                >
                                > 4
                                >
                                > 1261
                                >
                                > 0.27
                                >
                                > 336
                                >
                                >
                                > 5
                                >
                                > 1255
                                >
                                > 0.29
                                >
                                > 367
                                >
                                >
                                > 6
                                >
                                > 1248
                                >
                                > 0.32
                                >
                                > 402
                                >
                                >
                                > 7
                                >
                                > 1242
                                >
                                > 0.35
                                >
                                > 440
                                >
                                >
                                > 8
                                >
                                > 1236
                                >
                                > 0.39
                                >
                                > 482
                                >
                                >
                                > 9
                                >
                                > 1230
                                >
                                > 0.43
                                >
                                > 527
                                >
                                >
                                > 10
                                >
                                > 1224
                                >
                                > 0.47
                                >
                                > 577
                                >
                                >
                                > 11
                                >
                                > 1217
                                >
                                > 0.52
                                >
                                > 632
                                >
                                >
                                > 12
                                >
                                > 1211
                                >
                                > 0.57
                                >
                                > 691
                                >
                                >
                                > 13
                                >
                                > 1205
                                >
                                > 0.63
                                >
                                > 757
                                >
                                >
                                > 14
                                >
                                > 1199
                                >
                                > 0.69
                                >
                                > 828
                                >
                                >
                                > 15
                                >
                                > 1193
                                >
                                > 0.76
                                >
                                > 906
                                >
                                >
                                > 16
                                >
                                > 1187
                                >
                                > 0.84
                                >
                                > 992
                                >
                                >
                                > 17
                                >
                                > 1181
                                >
                                > 0.92
                                >
                                > 1086
                                >
                                >
                                > 18
                                >
                                > 1175
                                >
                                > 1.01
                                >
                                > 1188
                                >
                                >
                                > 19
                                >
                                > 1170
                                >
                                > 1.11
                                >
                                > 1301
                                >
                                >
                                > 20
                                >
                                > 1164
                                >
                                > 1.22
                                >
                                > 1423
                                >
                                >
                                > 21
                                >
                                > 1158
                                >
                                > 1.35
                                >
                                > 1558
                                >
                                >
                                > 22
                                >
                                > 1152
                                >
                                > 1.48
                                >
                                > 1705
                                >
                                >
                                > 23
                                >
                                > 1146
                                >
                                > 1.63
                                >
                                > 1866
                                >
                                >
                                > 24
                                >
                                > 1141
                                >
                                > 1.79
                                >
                                > 2043
                                >
                                >
                                > 25
                                >
                                > 1135
                                >
                                > 1.97
                                >
                                > 2236
                                >

                              • Jay Ring
                                For the system I am considering installing, I calculated approximately a 7.5% APR You can find some rough calculations here, and adjust it with your own
                                Message 15 of 19 , Nov 17, 2008
                                  For the system I am considering installing, I calculated approximately
                                  a 7.5% APR

                                  You can find some rough calculations here, and adjust it with your own
                                  assumptions if you like:
                                  http://www.transcendent.us/static/200811/power.xls

                                  If you getting a 5% return in an alternative investment, solar pulls
                                  ahead in the 24th year. At a 10% return (10 year average on the dow),
                                  you are approximately $75,000 better off in 25 years. Well, that's
                                  not chump change so consider it carefully - the expected outcome is
                                  you are going to be down $75,000.

                                  You have to be pretty optimistic to think we don't have systemic
                                  economic problems (unfunded social security comes to mind), and the
                                  10% return may very well be a thing of the past. I don't want to get
                                  too political, so lets just say risk management is always a good idea.

                                  Most people diversify their portfolio with some safer, lower interest
                                  investments - particularly as they age. A solar install might be a
                                  good choice. I would say it's an approximate wash - do it for
                                  portfolio diversity :)

                                  I've beat that horse before but it's important!

                                  Another thing we've all left out in the big gamble that is long term
                                  investments -

                                  How much will the same system cost in 5 years? If you think it's
                                  getting cheaper (and it seems many people here do), then you should
                                  probably wait.







                                  --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Gary Beck" <eco@...> wrote:
                                  >
                                  > I would venture that many 'Houston'-REG members may have come from
                                  > Houston energy, oil, gas, or chemical industries. Many probably worked
                                  > either directly around energy technologies, or formed knowledgable
                                  > realistic energy opinions just by being here. With all these experts we
                                  > can have some fun and informative debates.
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > But it's a gamble If you are trying to predict the future. Will Spark
                                  > run out of juice in 2010? Or will someone turn my home's 50 lbs of
                                  > weekly solid waste stew into a 20 gallons of butanol in 2012? Maybe we
                                  > should check with a gambling expert. How do Las Vegas odds maker lists
                                  > whether fossil fuels will dramatically rise in the next two decade, or
                                  > not?
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > I think they might note that the huge life style changing populations of
                                  > China, India, and emerging North Africa may want food, clean water,
                                  > lighting, heating, cooling, and transportation, just like we do. And
                                  > then energy will just flow to the highest bidder. I'm betting those
                                  > bookies would set their odds based on these clear and unarguable facts.
                                  > So...the wheel is spinning,...time to place your bets!
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
                                  > Chris
                                  > Sent: Monday, November 17, 2008 9:47 PM
                                  > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                                  > Subject: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  > Robert,
                                  >
                                  > Your criticism is welcome as it allows us to clear up some questions:
                                  > 1) The second calculation in the e-mail did include the cost of
                                  > capital. It shows that the cost of capital is on par with the
                                  > historical increase in electric rates.
                                  > 2) Insurance cost increases are minimum. A few dollars per year.
                                  > 3) There is no property tax on solar equipment.
                                  > 4) There is no maintenance on solar equipment (unless you want to
                                  > squeeze a little more juice out of them and rinse them every few
                                  > months).
                                  > 5) Extrapolating historic electric trends assumes there is infinite
                                  > fossil resources available cheaply (clean, high BTU, close to the
                                  > surface), which is not the case, so logic tells us fossil costs will
                                  > continue to rise exponentially (although they went out of control in
                                  > the last year and are now re-adjusting). Or, it assumes that an
                                  > alternative solution will arise and reach mass-production economic
                                  > efficiency (which only happens with an initial investment).
                                  >
                                  > There are plenty of reasons to have a solar system (or other
                                  > renewable power source). And if you don't want to be part of the
                                  > American energy solution, that is your choice.
                                  >
                                  > -Chris
                                  >
                                  > You can hang with the dinosaurs, or evolve with the survivors.
                                  >
                                  > --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com <mailto:hreg%40yahoogroups.com> , "Robert
                                  > Johnston" <junk1@> wrote:
                                  > >
                                  > > Chris,
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase
                                  > over 25
                                  > > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                                  > > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
                                  > property taxes,
                                  > > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
                                  > BTW, I
                                  > > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
                                  > > yesterday (for Brazoria County), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Robert Johnston
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > From: hreg@yahoogroups.com <mailto:hreg%40yahoogroups.com>
                                  > [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com <mailto:hreg%40yahoogroups.com> ] On Behalf
                                  >
                                  > Of Chris
                                  > > Boyer
                                  > > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
                                  > > To: HREG
                                  > > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
                                  > was part
                                  > > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for
                                  > solar
                                  > > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
                                  > owners
                                  > > in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is
                                  > comparable
                                  > > to buying electricity from your utility company.
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Here's the math (simple version):
                                  > >
                                  > > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
                                  > >
                                  > > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
                                  > >
                                  > > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
                                  > >
                                  > > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over
                                  > 25 years
                                  > >
                                  > > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
                                  > >
                                  > > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Example:
                                  > >
                                  > > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
                                  > >
                                  > > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Here's the math another way (complex version)
                                  > >
                                  > > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
                                  > If I had
                                  > > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get
                                  > a
                                  > > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
                                  > investment at
                                  > > this time, let me know!).
                                  > >
                                  > > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
                                  > number)
                                  > > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on
                                  > our
                                  > > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
                                  > rates are
                                  > > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
                                  > increased at
                                  > > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade. If
                                  > you
                                  > > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
                                  > (0.5%
                                  > > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
                                  > still come
                                  > > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
                                  > return;
                                  > > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
                                  > system if
                                  > > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the
                                  > nation toward
                                  > > sustainability.
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
                                  > same rate
                                  > > that you expect electricity to escalate.
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
                                  > >
                                  > > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to
                                  > incomprehensible
                                  > > jibberish).
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > Year
                                  > >
                                  > > Generation
                                  > >
                                  > > (kWh/yr)
                                  > >
                                  > > Elect
                                  > >
                                  > > ($/kWh)
                                  > >
                                  > > $Solar Revenue
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 0
                                  > >
                                  > > 0
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.20
                                  > >
                                  > > -8000
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 1
                                  > >
                                  > > 1280
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.20
                                  > >
                                  > > 2656
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 2
                                  > >
                                  > > 1274
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.22
                                  > >
                                  > > 280
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 3
                                  > >
                                  > > 1267
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.24
                                  > >
                                  > > 307
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 4
                                  > >
                                  > > 1261
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.27
                                  > >
                                  > > 336
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 5
                                  > >
                                  > > 1255
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.29
                                  > >
                                  > > 367
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 6
                                  > >
                                  > > 1248
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.32
                                  > >
                                  > > 402
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 7
                                  > >
                                  > > 1242
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.35
                                  > >
                                  > > 440
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 8
                                  > >
                                  > > 1236
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.39
                                  > >
                                  > > 482
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 9
                                  > >
                                  > > 1230
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.43
                                  > >
                                  > > 527
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 10
                                  > >
                                  > > 1224
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.47
                                  > >
                                  > > 577
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 11
                                  > >
                                  > > 1217
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.52
                                  > >
                                  > > 632
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 12
                                  > >
                                  > > 1211
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.57
                                  > >
                                  > > 691
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 13
                                  > >
                                  > > 1205
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.63
                                  > >
                                  > > 757
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 14
                                  > >
                                  > > 1199
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.69
                                  > >
                                  > > 828
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 15
                                  > >
                                  > > 1193
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.76
                                  > >
                                  > > 906
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 16
                                  > >
                                  > > 1187
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.84
                                  > >
                                  > > 992
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 17
                                  > >
                                  > > 1181
                                  > >
                                  > > 0.92
                                  > >
                                  > > 1086
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 18
                                  > >
                                  > > 1175
                                  > >
                                  > > 1.01
                                  > >
                                  > > 1188
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 19
                                  > >
                                  > > 1170
                                  > >
                                  > > 1.11
                                  > >
                                  > > 1301
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 20
                                  > >
                                  > > 1164
                                  > >
                                  > > 1.22
                                  > >
                                  > > 1423
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 21
                                  > >
                                  > > 1158
                                  > >
                                  > > 1.35
                                  > >
                                  > > 1558
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 22
                                  > >
                                  > > 1152
                                  > >
                                  > > 1.48
                                  > >
                                  > > 1705
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 23
                                  > >
                                  > > 1146
                                  > >
                                  > > 1.63
                                  > >
                                  > > 1866
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 24
                                  > >
                                  > > 1141
                                  > >
                                  > > 1.79
                                  > >
                                  > > 2043
                                  > >
                                  > >
                                  > > 25
                                  > >
                                  > > 1135
                                  > >
                                  > > 1.97
                                  > >
                                  > > 2236
                                  > >
                                  >
                                • Jim & Janet
                                  Gary asked: ....will someone turn my home s 50 lbs of weekly solid waste stew into a 20 gallons of butanol in 2012? __ It s already been done. This waste
                                  Message 16 of 19 , Nov 17, 2008
                                    Gary asked:
                                     
                                    ....will someone turn my home's 50 lbs of weekly solid waste stew into a 20 gallons of butanol in 2012? __
                                     
                                    It's already been done. This waste disposal system in Stockholm, and a number of other cities, beats the heck out of refuse and recycling trucks once a week. Waste just disappears into pipes under homes and businesses and eventually is turned into biofuel of some sort where it is resold back to the residents.
                                     
                                    Jim
                                  • William
                                    All, Attached is a link to an interesting perspective from a Permaculture group in Australia concerning the IEA.....
                                    Message 17 of 19 , Nov 18, 2008
                                      All,
                                      Attached is a link to an interesting perspective from a
                                      Permaculture group in Australia concerning the IEA.....

                                      http://permaculture.org.au/2008/11/17/staring-at-the-future-from-the-
                                      top-of-the-slippery-slide/

                                      I too think it is well written, being also that it is not full of
                                      ideals of "stay the course." It comes from the other side of the
                                      world with its own hydrocarbon issues.
                                      In an age when we know we should be cutting back on emissions and
                                      developing another means of transportation we - collectively, are
                                      getting ready to burn the rest of our resources and release it as
                                      CO2.
                                      The Great Northwest Passage was shown on one of the TV networks last
                                      night. They indicate that now without the ice blocking the route it's
                                      a much shorter route for shipping - Hooray! But they also say it is
                                      one of the best areas for continued drilling and extraction of fossil
                                      fuels - which one is it?
                                      I personally believe that we have much more creativity than this -
                                      than we are currently using. If America decides to do something "big"
                                      and make major changes toward the future everybody's going to want
                                      in, eventually. Oil and gas technology is at its best, it has to be.
                                      I believe it can be a tool for many things.
                                      Take my flathead screwdriver for instance. It is sharp and square and
                                      perfect for attaching and detaching slotted screws and bolts. But it
                                      also doubles as many, many things. A leverage tool,paint can opener,
                                      chisel/wood splitter, extraction tool (magnetized) etc, etc...
                                      So should oil/gas technology be used for other methods of energy
                                      extraction.
                                      We have to.


                                      Bill
                                      --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Gary Beck" <eco@...> wrote:
                                      >
                                      > I would venture that many 'Houston'-REG members may have come from
                                      > Houston energy, oil, gas, or chemical industries. Many probably
                                      worked
                                      > either directly around energy technologies, or formed knowledgable
                                      > realistic energy opinions just by being here. With all these
                                      experts we
                                      > can have some fun and informative debates.
                                      >
                                      >
                                      >
                                      > But it's a gamble If you are trying to predict the future. Will
                                      Spark
                                      > run out of juice in 2010? Or will someone turn my home's 50 lbs of
                                      > weekly solid waste stew into a 20 gallons of butanol in 2012?
                                      Maybe we
                                      > should check with a gambling expert. How do Las Vegas odds maker
                                      lists
                                      > whether fossil fuels will dramatically rise in the next two decade,
                                      or
                                      > not?
                                      >
                                      >
                                      >
                                      > I think they might note that the huge life style changing
                                      populations of
                                      > China, India, and emerging North Africa may want food, clean water,
                                      > lighting, heating, cooling, and transportation, just like we do. And
                                      > then energy will just flow to the highest bidder. I'm betting those
                                      > bookies would set their odds based on these clear and unarguable
                                      facts.
                                      > So...the wheel is spinning,...time to place your bets!
                                      >
                                      >
                                      >
                                      >
                                      >
                                    • Robert Johnston
                                      Chris, Thanks for the feedback. I m as eager as the next guy to see solar be cost competitive because I would like to use it. But I also am pretty hard-nosed
                                      Message 18 of 19 , Nov 18, 2008

                                        Chris,

                                         

                                        Thanks for the feedback.  I’m as eager as the next guy to see solar be cost competitive because I would like to use it.  But I also am pretty hard-nosed about the money, so don’t want to jump in before there is a clear and convincing economic case, not just hype and not just environmental impact (call me selfish if you want; I don’t care, because I do other things that reduce my environmental impact/carbon footprint).

                                         

                                        I’d appreciate your comments on these responses to yours:

                                        1.        The second calculation appears to use 4% as the expected return on an investment.  That is a lot lower than the cost of capital.  If I were to add solar to my home by taking out a home equity loan at my credit union, the cost would be approximately 7% APR for a 20 year loan.

                                        2.        I’m questioning your claim that insurance would just be a few dollars.  My homeowners, windstorm and flood policy is currently approximately a total of $2832, only $708 of which is homeowners (I live near about 12 miles from the coast).  Since windstorm and flood are basically controlled by the cost of the house and contents (whereas homeowners also includes a component that is “baseline” due to liabilities of people on my property, etc.), most of my insurance cost would, I think (I don’t have an actual quote), be proportional to my home cost.  Since my home’s limit of liability is $179,000, I would expect a $50,000 solar system (which wouldn’t even begin to cover all my electricity needs) to be an additional approximately (50/179)*2832 = $791/yr.  If I’m reading you correctly, the 31,250 kWh is per rated kWh over the 25 year lifetime.  After the federal rebate, $50,000 would buy me (50000/5600)*31250/25 = 11161 kWh/yr.  At my current utility rate of 12.9 cents/kWh, that amount of power would cost me $1440.  Thus, the insurance alone would cost me more than half the cost of simply buying the power from my utility company.  Am I missing something?

                                        3.       I was not aware of the property tax exemption until someone else brought it up earlier in this thread.  Is that statewide or does it vary by region?  Does it apply to all taxing authorities or only to city or school district?

                                        4.       Are you saying you expect no damage over the course of 25 years to the control system (from some kind of surge?), the panels (from storms or hail), or any other components?  Sure, one can argue that this would be covered by insurance, but my experience with insurance is that typically you are out a couple grand in deductibles and if the damage were small (from a few hailstones or something) you might even end up paying all of it out of deductibles.  I find it hard to believe that I could put panels on my roof and nothing would happen for 25 years.  i.e., I doubt it is “risk-free” as you suggest.

                                        5.       Critics have long underestimated the time it will take for energy sources to be depleted.  Even today, when it comes to electricity, there is plenty of coal and nuclear fuel, provided the plants are built.  Given that most people depend on utilities, I suspect that the political will to provide reasonably powered electricity will be there and we won’t see astronomical rates except as spikes from time to time.  If it were otherwise, the entire economy would screech to a halt.  In that case, I’d probably have to sit outside my house with an assault rifle 24x7 just to keep my solar panels from being stolen!  (look what thieves are doing with copper wiring today, and times are nearly as bad as they would be if electric rates doubled or tripled for an extended time).

                                         

                                        Still seems to me that our best hope is to see costs of solar drop to be truly competitive with utility provided electricity.  I believe that is only a matter of time.  There are so many new and exciting solar technologies coming from new faces like Nanosolar etc.

                                         

                                        Your last sentence was unwarranted:  “If you don’t want to be part of the American energy solution, that is your choice.”  I hope you didn’t intend to suggest that you are the one to define what is the “American energy solution”, that if I don’t install solar panels I am not part of the American energy solution, or even that the solar system I would install would necessarily be American in the first place.  I could, for instance, buy 100% renewable windpower from a utility provider for less than the cost of solar panels on my roof, and that would seem every bit as much a part of the American energy solution as solar panels would be, and maybe even more (given the manufacturers of windpower are dominated by Americans).  Even drilling for oil in ANWAR is an “American energy solution”, even if it isn’t one you like.  And as I said earlier, I am seeking cost effective solutions, since my budget doesn’t allow me to splurge on big systems just because I feel like it.  For example, for me, being a vegetarian happens to be a way I can both reduce cost of food, reduce health care costs, and reduce carbon footprint and environmental impact.  I certainly don’t criticize those who choose to eat differently than I do or suggest they aren’t part of the American energy solution, nor do I criticize those who choose to invest in solar now.  In fact, more power to them, as they are pioneers that are paving the way for eventual cost reduction as technology continues to improve.  However, I just don’t buy the idea that it is cost effective today, nor that our government should subsidize the industry (except to the extent that it subsidizes utilities, though I’d rather it didn’t subsidize anybody).  If I’m wrong, I hope you can provide more convincing figures.

                                         

                                        Thanks for the discussion.  I’d like to see you post a comprehensive analysis using realistic financial assumptions and let’s see if it does in fact make financial sense to install solar panels now.

                                         

                                        Robert

                                         

                                         

                                         

                                        From: hreg@yahoogroups.com [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Chris
                                        Sent: Monday, November 17, 2008 9:47 PM
                                        To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                                        Subject: [hreg] Re: Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity

                                         

                                        Robert,

                                        Your criticism is welcome as it allows us to clear up some questions:
                                        1) The second calculation in the e-mail did include the cost of
                                        capital. It shows that the cost of capital is on par with the
                                        historical increase in electric rates.
                                        2) Insurance cost increases are minimum. A few dollars per year.
                                        3) There is no property tax on solar equipment.
                                        4) There is no maintenance on solar equipment (unless you want to
                                        squeeze a little more juice out of them and rinse them every few
                                        months).
                                        5) Extrapolating historic electric trends assumes there is infinite
                                        fossil resources available cheaply (clean, high BTU, close to the
                                        surface), which is not the case, so logic tells us fossil costs will
                                        continue to rise exponentially (although they went out of control in
                                        the last year and are now re-adjusting). Or, it assumes that an
                                        alternative solution will arise and reach mass-production economic
                                        efficency (which only happens with an initial investment).

                                        There are plenty of reasons to have a solar system (or other
                                        renewable power source). And if you don't want to be part of the
                                        American energy solution, that is your choice.

                                        -Chris

                                        You can hang with the dinasaurs, or evolve with the survivors.

                                        --- In hreg@yahoogroups.com, "Robert Johnston" <junk1@...> wrote:

                                        >
                                        > Chris,
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > You are missing the capital cost. If you financed the purchase
                                        over 25
                                        > years, you'd have a more realistic comparison, and it would be less
                                        > favorable. Then add in the extra insurance costs, increased
                                        property taxes,
                                        > and maintenance costs, and you'll jack the price up even further.
                                        BTW, I
                                        > just purchased a 12.9 cent/kWh 12 month fixed plan from Spark Energy
                                        > yesterday (for Brazoria County), so your 17.9 cents/kWh sounds high.
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Robert Johnston
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > From: hreg@yahoogroups.com
                                        [mailto:hreg@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                                        Of Chris
                                        > Boyer
                                        > Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 10:18 PM
                                        > To: HREG
                                        > Subject: [hreg] Cost of Solar PV same as Utility Electricity
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Many of you may not know it, but there was a solar incentive that
                                        was part
                                        > of the bank bail out bill. There is now a Federal Tax Credit for
                                        solar
                                        > photovoltaic systems. This tax credit is very significant for home
                                        owners
                                        > in Houston because it now means that buying solar electricity is
                                        comparable
                                        > to buying electricity from your utility company.
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Here's the math (simple version):
                                        >
                                        > PV System cost ~$8,000 per rated kW installed.
                                        >
                                        > Federal Tax credit ~$2,400 per rated kW installed (no upper limit).
                                        >
                                        > Net Cost = ~$5,600 per rated kW installed
                                        >
                                        > The PV system will produce ~31,250 kWh per rated kW in Houston over
                                        25 years
                                        >
                                        > The cost of solar electricity is then $5,600 / 31,250 = $0.179/kWh
                                        >
                                        > That's what I'm paying the utility company now (actually the REP).
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Example:
                                        >
                                        > 3.5 kW System Cost $28,000
                                        >
                                        > Fed Tax Credit gives you $8,400 back (you can carry it forward)
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Here's the math another way (complex version)
                                        >
                                        > Some will say that we have to account for the time value of money.
                                        If I had
                                        > the money to spend on a PV system I could invest it instead and get
                                        a
                                        > certain return (Although, if any of you can find a risk free
                                        investment at
                                        > this time, let me know!).
                                        >
                                        > We can still start and initial payment at $0.179/kWh (or any other
                                        number)
                                        > and add a required interest rate, or return percentage required on
                                        our
                                        > investment. If we do that, we also have to assume that electric
                                        rates are
                                        > going to increase with time over the next 25 years; they have
                                        increased at
                                        > an average to ~5 to 10% per year in Texas over the last decade. If
                                        you
                                        > escalate the electric price by 5% and account for panel degradation
                                        (0.5%
                                        > per year), and put your Tax Credit after the first year, they you
                                        still come
                                        > up with a NET POSITIVE RETURN of 4%. This may not seem like a high
                                        return;
                                        > however, it is absolutely risk free (home insurance will cover the
                                        system if
                                        > damaged) AND you are joining the millions who are leading the
                                        nation toward
                                        > sustainability.
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Even if you get a loan, you break even if you get the loan at the
                                        same rate
                                        > that you expect electricity to escalate.
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Now you have every reason to put solar on your home.
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Here's the numbers for the investment with a return of 4%:
                                        >
                                        > (Sorry, I know many browsers will turn this table to
                                        incomprehensible
                                        > jibberish).
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > Year
                                        >
                                        > Generation
                                        >
                                        > (kWh/yr)
                                        >
                                        > Elect
                                        >
                                        > ($/kWh)
                                        >
                                        > $Solar Revenue
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 0
                                        >
                                        > 0
                                        >
                                        > 0.20
                                        >
                                        > -8000
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 1
                                        >
                                        > 1280
                                        >
                                        > 0.20
                                        >
                                        > 2656
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 2
                                        >
                                        > 1274
                                        >
                                        > 0.22
                                        >
                                        > 280
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 3
                                        >
                                        > 1267
                                        >
                                        > 0.24
                                        >
                                        > 307
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 4
                                        >
                                        > 1261
                                        >
                                        > 0.27
                                        >
                                        > 336
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 5
                                        >
                                        > 1255
                                        >
                                        > 0.29
                                        >
                                        > 367
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 6
                                        >
                                        > 1248
                                        >
                                        > 0.32
                                        >
                                        > 402
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 7
                                        >
                                        > 1242
                                        >
                                        > 0.35
                                        >
                                        > 440
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 8
                                        >
                                        > 1236
                                        >
                                        > 0.39
                                        >
                                        > 482
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 9
                                        >
                                        > 1230
                                        >
                                        > 0.43
                                        >
                                        > 527
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 10
                                        >
                                        > 1224
                                        >
                                        > 0.47
                                        >
                                        > 577
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 11
                                        >
                                        > 1217
                                        >
                                        > 0.52
                                        >
                                        > 632
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 12
                                        >
                                        > 1211
                                        >
                                        > 0.57
                                        >
                                        > 691
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 13
                                        >
                                        > 1205
                                        >
                                        > 0.63
                                        >
                                        > 757
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 14
                                        >
                                        > 1199
                                        >
                                        > 0.69
                                        >
                                        > 828
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 15
                                        >
                                        > 1193
                                        >
                                        > 0.76
                                        >
                                        > 906
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 16
                                        >
                                        > 1187
                                        >
                                        > 0.84
                                        >
                                        > 992
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 17
                                        >
                                        > 1181
                                        >
                                        > 0.92
                                        >
                                        > 1086
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 18
                                        >
                                        > 1175
                                        >
                                        > 1.01
                                        >
                                        > 1188
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 19
                                        >
                                        > 1170
                                        >
                                        > 1.11
                                        >
                                        > 1301
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 20
                                        >
                                        > 1164
                                        >
                                        > 1.22
                                        >
                                        > 1423
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 21
                                        >
                                        > 1158
                                        >
                                        > 1.35
                                        >
                                        > 1558
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 22
                                        >
                                        > 1152
                                        >
                                        > 1.48
                                        >
                                        > 1705
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 23
                                        >
                                        > 1146
                                        >
                                        > 1.63
                                        >
                                        > 1866
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 24
                                        >
                                        > 1141
                                        >
                                        > 1.79
                                        >
                                        > 2043
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > 25
                                        >
                                        > 1135
                                        >
                                        > 1.97
                                        >
                                        > 2236
                                        >

                                      • Warren Benson
                                        I was curious, with regard to your discussion of Solar system costs, if there were more variables to be considered such as using cheaper thin film type
                                        Message 19 of 19 , Nov 22, 2008

                                          I was curious, with regard to your discussion of Solar system costs, if there were more variables to be considered  such as using cheaper thin film type panels.  I guess, for one, that these aren’t actually available for residential construction yet as I can’t find them on line anywhere. But I assume they soon will be. I think First Solar just signed an agreement to make theirs available (in California ?).

                                           

                                          Anyway, when they do become available, won’t they dramatically reduce the cost? I realize also that they’ll take up more space since they are less efficient per square foot, but fortunately almost all of my roof is facing south so there’s plenty of room.

                                           

                                          I’m glad to see that solar is already on par with other forms of energy when played out over the life of the panels.  I’m looking forward to the time I can jump in and ‘make a difference’, but in my situation, I still need a little more of a price break.

                                           

                                          Thanks in advance,

                                          Warren Benson

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