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174Re: [force_ev] OT: Affects CA EV drivers: Watt Cops

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  • Noel Adams
    Feb 3, 2001
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      Gotta remember, most people don't understand that electric power is going begging in the wee hours of the morning. They see closed businesses with their lights on and think "what a waste'.

      Setting up a plan to have people cut this waste is a political move. I don't think anyone is going to be pushing to stop people charging their EVs overnight, though peak periods may be a different matter - I hope not.

      The plans to get everyone to conserve energy and to shift usage away from peak hours though is a good thing.

      On Fri, 02 February 2001, Bruce EVangel Parmenter wrote:

      > OT: Affects CA EV drivers: Watt Cops
      > [IMHO: cutting back on power other than the daytime peak periods is
      > again another example how those in charge, do not understand when
      > the real power is needed. During the day=Yes, during the Night=dumb
      > I can see it now, the cop comes over and sez,
      > "OK buddy, you get a ticket. You know we have to save Electricity."
      > "But Officer, I have to charge my Electric Vehicle to get to work
      > tomorrow."
      > -I forsee a wave of anti-EV sentiment for this bogus rule. As George
      > simply put it, "It's a bad law". This also is a bad move.]
      > -
      > www.sfgate.com State OKs $10 Billion for Power CONSERVE OR ELSE:
      > $1000-a-day fines for stores that don't comply Robert Salladay, Joe
      > Garofoli, Chronicle Staff Writers Friday, February 2, 2001
      > 2001 San Francisco Chronicle
      > URL:
      > http://www.sfgate.com:80/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2001/02/02/MN166216.DTL
      > Gov. Gray Davis invoked his emergency powers yesterday and ordered
      > California's auto malls, shopping centers and other retail outlets to
      > dim their lights after closing - or face $1,000-a-day fines.
      > Under an extraordinary executive order signed by Davis, law
      > enforcement agencies and the Office of Emergency Services have the
      > next week to figure out which businesses should cut their outdoor
      > lighting without jeopardizing safety or increasing crime.
      > Davis gave county sheriffs and the California Highway Patrol the
      > authority to penalize recalcitrant business up to $1,000 a day
      > starting March 15, when the program becomes mandatory. The emergency
      > order lasts "until the governor rescinds it," said a spokesman.
      > Violators face criminal misdemeanor charges.
      > The order is part of a $404 million conservation effort that includes
      > rebates for energy-saving appliances, money for businesses to install
      > energy efficient roofs and more efficient lighting, and a TV
      > commercial encouraging people to wash their clothes after 7 p.m.
      > McDonald's will pay to print 4 million paper place mats with energy
      > conservation tips.
      > Davis said the plans should save enough power to supply an estimated
      > 3.7 million homes during the summer. Under the state of emergency
      > Davis declared Jan. 17, California's vast bureaucracies were ordered
      > to cut power 20 percent, and residents were asked to voluntarily cut
      > usage by 7 percent.
      > "Yes, we have a power shortage," Davis said, "but we are far from
      > powerless.
      > Californians have enormous clout as consumers."
      > Democratic lawmakers have been asking Davis for three weeks to
      > introduce conservation measures, not just negotiate for lower power
      > prices or work to build more power plants. Davis' plan would double
      > the amount California spends on energy conservation -- to $800
      > million.
      > "I mean, is it too much to ask for these auto malls to turn off the
      > lights from midnight to 6 a.m.?" asked Senate President Pro Tem John
      > Burton, D-San Francisco, who supports more conservation efforts but is
      > leery of using law enforcement to monitor usage.
      > Although nearly every major business group in the state, including
      > Silicon Valley and grocery store lobbyists, said they supported Davis'
      > plan to cut outdoor lighting, not everyone running a business was
      > enthusiastic about having their energy usage monitored by the state.
      > "Shouldn't the governor be worried about trying to get more power
      > instead of running around fining people?" asked Juergen Frost, owner
      > of a Pleasant Hill furniture shop.
      > Last week, a Chronicle report on nighttime electricity use by
      > businesses noted that two dozen lamps burned brightly inside Frost's
      > store at 10:30 p.m., a few hours after closing. Frost said his timer
      > had malfunctioned -- the lights should be off before midnight. Still,
      > he doesn't plan to begin turning his lights off when his store
      > closes.
      > "My gas and electric bill is only $160 a month (for the
      > 6,000-square-foot store)," Frost said. "Show me what the other big
      > electricity users are doing. Since the economy is a little soft, we do
      > have to show our lights."
      > Many details remain unwritten on Davis' plan to monitor power usage
      > and issue fines. Davis' executive order simply asks the CHP and the
      > sheriffs from nine major counties, including Alameda, to "develop a
      > plan" by Feb. 9. The state Trade and Commerce Agency is in charge of
      > notifying businesses of the orders.
      > That plan could require certain types of businesses, such as auto
      > malls or grocery stores, to cut power by a certain percentage, or it
      > could order specific businesses, block-by-block, to cut their lights
      > during the early morning hours.
      > Businesses that fail to comply with an order following a warning from
      > law enforcement can be charged with a misdemeanor and fined, the
      > governor's executive order states. Officials in the governor's office
      > said they had the power to implement the plan under the state's
      > Emergency Services Act.
      > However, "the governor is reasonably confident people will voluntarily
      > participate," said spokeswoman Hilary McLean.
      > Davis said he wanted to make sure that whatever the sheriff or CHP
      > ordered, the retail outlets still had enough light to prevent crime.
      > Indeed, legal experts warned that making it easier for criminals to
      > trespass or break into a building could put the state in jeopardy.
      > "I would say that the state is liable for negligence if the state
      > requires someone to underlight their premises so as to cause injury to
      > somebody, including themselves," said Jesse Choper, a UC Berkeley law
      > professor.
      > Shamrock Ford in Dublin turned off half the lights on its lot after it
      > was featured in the same Chronicle story. In that time, two cars have
      > been stolen, but the company still is trying to conserve energy.
      > "If you're asking if we're going to shut down to pitch black after we
      > close,
      > the answer is no. No way," said Gordon Giacomazzi, director of sales
      > at Shamrock Ford, a beacon along Interstate 580 in Dublin. "If you had
      > $14 million worth of cars on your property, would you feel safe with
      > the lights turned off?"
      > Dublin Vice Mayor Janet Lockhart said that even if the city requested
      > lights as part of an overall look of a development, it wasn't
      > requiring businesses to keep them on now.
      > "I don't think it's my job to knock on someone's door and tell them
      > how to run their business," Lockhart said. "I'm confident that Dublin
      > businesses will be good corporate citizens and comply with the
      > governor's order."
      > Chronicle staff writer Bob Egelko contributed to this report. / E-mail
      > Robert Salladay at rsalladay@... and Joe Garofoli at
      > jgarofoli@.... 2001 San Francisco Chronicle Page A1
      > -
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