Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Some Facts and Thoughts about the EPEC Rate Case

Some facts and thoughts:

The El Paso rate case comes in around 8,000 pages. Guess EPEC started this as soon as they didn't get everything that they wanted a year ago.

El Paso electric rates are the most expensive in the state of Texas. (Thought you should know.)

Why do we have high rates since 50% of our electricity comes from the Palo Duro nuclear power plant? Nuclear power is the most inexpensive means to generate electricity - second only to hydroelectric.

The last rate case cost rate payers $3.5M. EPEC's attorney fees and the City of El Paso's attorney fees are paid for through your electric bill. This means that there is no disincentive for EPEC to file case after case. 

Although commendable, EPEC's new solar program is really an oversell. An electron is an electron is an electron. It doesn't matter where or how electricity is generated. Those electrons just flow down the same wires. If you signed up for their program, you are paying for their new solar power plant is all.

I do not begrudge anyone her/his salary. Ms. Kipp is compensated below what other CEOs make - sexism perhaps? Still she makes just less than $1M per year. EPEC Board members make about 9X what I do as a City Council rep. (I make $29,000/year) These people are smart, financially savvy people. The cream of the crop. But really?

Finally, all of this rate business is really evidence of the dying throes of the electric utility business. Once batteries are manufactured that are affordable and capable of holding the necessary charge, each unit (home, business, school, etc.) will put up the solar panels, attach the batteries and disconnect from the electric company's grid. 5 years to such battery technology?

1 comment:

  1. Only the rich can afford solar panels, even with subsidies which are basically welfare for the wealthy.