Pacific Gas and Electric: not so climate smart after all

When you can’t sell this on the green left coast, you know its gotta fail worldwide.

Gotta love this quote, one of the best denials of reality I’ve ever seen:

“It was a demonstration program, and it’s successfully concluding after meeting its goals,” Romans said. “Certainly we would have loved for more customers to have participated.” said company spokeswoman Katie Romans.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/11/10/BUPR1LTB45.DTL#ixzz1dWdO8WPl

Now if that way out alarmist Mary Nichols and CARB can get a clue, we might be getting somewhere. CARB is still set to enact cap and trade in California.

I wonder if customers will get the 10 million dollars back they contributed to this “successful demonstration program”?

On the plus side, even Joltin Joe Romm thought the program was dumb

The spin PG&E put on the announcement would be enough to power several generators:

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Camburn

Calironia’s CARB is bad for California, but good for the nation as a whole. It will expand the business cycle for the other 49 states, while California’s declines.
The opportunities are tremendous as the displaced business’s reap the rewards of expansion in the economic viable 49.

Robert of Ottawa

Imagine, people will not voluntarily pay more for electricity. Now, we will see the Green Shirts employing force.

Steve in SC

Give em a fair trial and a nice hanging —- Rooster Cogburn

GaryW

Hah! You folks have never worked for an investor owned utility in California. All that green crap is mandated by the state. Administrative law judges reduce the companies rate of return on investment if the company does not make these noises. Fortunately there are enough believers around that PG&E and SCE can hire them to run these silly projects. Gag reflex keeps normal people in those companies from taking these green projects on. The normal folks can keep on trying to make do with the reduced maintenance funds allowed by those same administrative law judges. After all, if you spend money testing and maintaining natural gas pipe lines, you are just wasting customer money – or so the CPUC said in the past.

Stephen Brown

The company wanted 160,000 sign-ups but got only 29,623 at the end of their ‘campaign’ to coerce their customers into paying more for their power in order to let some trees grow bigger and better.
I wonder why the scheme was such a dismal failure? Can’t figure it out, myself.

Nice try. Get your customers to pay for your carbon credit projects so you can sell them to the other utillities who will charge their customers for the credits they had to buy.

Bad Manners

Australia’s Origin Energy has just started to promote its “Green Energy” campaign whereby, for $1 per week, consumers can reduce their impact on the planet. http://www.originenergy.com.au/1542/Green-energy
Perhaps they could take a leaf out of PG&E’s book.

DJ

So, PG&E used the $100K/mo to fund that cabin up at Tahoe where select and dedicated executives monitored the impact of greenhouse gases and sequestering bimbos,,,er, I mean limbos…er, I mean alternate heating methods at the extreme lower troposphere….. On weekends, of course.
Wouldn’t the ratepayers LOVE to the the independent audit report on this one????

Just another display of the abject hypocrisy employed by the warmista.

Keith

So it costs an incremental $3.30 a month for “carbon-neutral” energy? Ha! The £/$ exchange rate must have gone loco then, as in the UK it already costs everyone around £25 a month on top of our bills to fund policies and initiatives that do not even get close.

One wonders what gave them the notion that they would have 168,000 takers (accuracy to first three significant figures!). I suspect they used some bogus theoretical studies about “willingness to pay.” Anyone know?
I wonder if similar methodology has been used to model the voluntary penetration of solar, wind and other renewable technologies.

Claude Harvey

The bottom line in California appears to be the following: The majority of Californians will not VOLUNTARILY pay more for green energy, but the majority of Californians will VOTE for politicians who FORCE them to pay more for green energy. I’d equate the demonstrated California mentality to that of Warren Buffet, who refuses to write a check to the U.S. Treasury each year for more than his calculated federal income tax bill (after a covey of accountants and tax attorneys have squeezed that bill to an absolute minimum) while complaining that the federal government does not charge the rich enough in taxes.

DirkH

Robert of Ottawa says:
November 12, 2011 at 3:13 pm
“Imagine, people will not voluntarily pay more for electricity. Now, we will see the Green Shirts employing force.”
Here in Germany, quite a lot do pay up. Greenpeace has a subsidiary “Greenpeace Energy” here that sells “100% renewable energy”, demanding amongst the highest prizes for electricity. The law here is that your local supplier must supply a basic tariff to you if you don’t have a contract with a different supplier. Greenpeace Energy is more expensive than these local suppliers yet finds customers. Of course, you get the same electricity like anyone else as you’re on the same grid; it’s more of an accounting exercise; and a lot of the renewable energy Greenpeace Energy sells to you is “recycled” Nuclear Power – meaning, you use cheap nighttime thermal base load from a French nuke to pump water up a hill, and during daytime you empty the reservoir, make electricity and resell it; it’s now hydropower and as PC as it gets.
I am not making this up. I am living amongst idiots.

Latitude

So they only got 15% of their voter base……..
It’s that same 15% that shows up in every poll

tesla_x

The program was basically like other PGE constructs, a reverse auction to get the credits from the lowest bidder.
A real disincentive, and rigged, In my opinion.
A full auditing of the money collected through the climatesmart program is necessary to preclude the appearance of impropriety and fraud, and an audit of the assets procured by the money is needed to verify that things like forests were truly additional carbon sinking material and not pre-existing the program.

u.k.(us)

Apparently, the cap on guilt assuagement is about $3.30 a month.
Now that a range has been established, the traders can come in and start manipulating the “market”.
Don’t know about California, but in Chicago this is the point where I start to wonder just how many of more greedy/stupid people begin their path to jail.

Curiousgeorge

Hey, Maw!! Where’s my waders? The BS is gettin’ pretty dang deep around here.

Al Gore's Holy Hologram

Dirty open secret : not all the offset money is spent, or any at all

With 5.1 million customers, and only 30,000 takers, this means only 0.5%, or one consumer in 200, felt they could afford to fore go a latte a month in the name of saving the planet. We’re doomed!!

DesertYote

Glad I was able to escape that insane state. The only place were adding regulations is called deregulation!

mkurbo

I think the customers should get their money back…
It time that a penality be paid by companies and governemnt (Solyndra) for this “green” agenda gone amuck !

Damage6

According to the news article the PG&E sucked in $16 plus million dollars from all rate payers to admininster the collection of $10 million from the few self flagelating fools who volunteered to be fleeced. And THESE people want to run the planet?

LazyTeenager

Robert of Ottawa on November 12, 2011 at 3:13 pm said:
Imagine, people will not voluntarily pay more for electricity. Now, we will see the Green Shirts employing force.
———-
People will not voluntarily pay for anything. And if you don’t pay the energy company for the energy you use the energy company will be employing the full force of the law.
So your green fascists fantasy seems to be tame compared to the reality.

chuck nolan

Indur M. Goklany says:
November 12, 2011 at 4:08 pm
One wonders what gave them the notion that they would have 168,000 takers (accuracy to first three significant figures!). I suspect they used some bogus theoretical studies about “willingness to pay.” Anyone know?
I wonder if similar methodology has been used to model the voluntary penetration of solar, wind and other renewable technologies.
————
It was models…..models all the way down.

Resourceguy

I’m going to be watching to make sure my state targets jobs in CA for recruitment during CARB. It will be a good litmus test of efforts in each of the other states.

Mark M

I find it interesting that an average customer ( with a monthly usage between 550 and 800 kwh) could of called them self carbon neutral for only $3.30 more a month on their bill. It looks like the folks in this program used to get the benefit of counting the large hydro and nuclear output from PG&E. Unfortunately, PG&E does NOT get to count these forms of carbon neutral generation towards their 33%RES target.
I wonder how much $ the average customer is going to be allocated for for the large utility scale PV projects PG&E has recently agreed to put in place to meet the 33% RES. It looks like NRG is going to be getting more then the average retail price customers currently pay for their electricity for just the generation part of the supply chain.
Firms gobble ‘green’ subsidies.”
http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/12/4049143/firms-gobble-green-subsidies.html
A few quotes from the article-
“The government support – which includes loan guarantees, cash grants and contracts that require electricity customers to pay higher rates – largely eliminated the risk to the private investors and almost guaranteed them large profits for years to come.”
“The beneficiaries include financial firms like Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, conglomerates like General Electric, utilities like Exelon and NRG – and even Google.
States such as California sweetened the pot by offering their own tax breaks and by approving long-term power-purchase contracts that require ratepayers to pay billions more for electricity for as long as two decades.”…
“NRG’s California Valley Solar Ranch project is a case study in the banquet of government subsidies available to the owners of a renewable-energy plant.”

Mike Jowsey

“..capturing methane from cow manure.”
Ruminant methane comes mainly from burping. A bit from flatulence, but afaik nobody is going around with plastic bags wrapping up cowpats to capture methane. But if somebody would send me a grant to study the possibility….

LazyTeenager

GaryW says
The normal folks can keep on trying to make do with the reduced maintenance funds allowed by those same administrative law judges.
———–
We have a similar problem here. State owned power companies that had been privatised or state owned power companies run on free enterprise lines, got caught between a rock and a hard place in their ability to make a return in the face of administratively controlled rates.
So there was no ongoing maintenance over many years. Over the next few years the system is going to do catchup. This means big hikes in rates.
Considering my ignorance of this area I am probably oversimplifying things. There may or may not be additional things hidden in there for things like managing the grid for things like windpower.
I am going to wager though that the political numbnuts will be running around lying about how the whole 30% increase is due to carbon tax.
No matter what the reason it is not a good time to waste power.

LazyTeenager

Stephen Brown says
The company wanted 160,000 sign-ups but got only 29,623 at the end of their ‘campaign’ to coerce their customers into paying more for their power
——-
To point out the obvious: if coercion had been used then they would definitely have got 160000 signups.
So it can be concluded that the programme was voluntary not coercive.

LazyTeenager

Bad Manners says
Bad Manners on November 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm said:
Australia’s Origin Energy has just started to promote its “Green Energy” campaign whereby, for $1 per week, consumers can reduce their impact on the planet. http://www.originenergy.com.au/1542/Green-energy
Perhaps they could take a leaf out of PG&E’s book.
———-
Possibly, but the Origin scheme, if you actually read it, is selling green power, not offsets. So there is a big difference.
You should read the link Anthony provided about the negatives of carbon offsets and repeated here:

Brian H

Californians would do well to contemplate the evolutionary fact that the only capital crime in Nature is stupidity. The death penalty, with no appeal.

LazyTeenager

Claude Harvey says
The bottom line in California appears to be the following: The majority of Californians will not VOLUNTARILY pay more for green energy, but the majority of Californians will VOTE for politicians who FORCE them to pay more for green energy.
————-
I believe its easy to understand and perfectly logical.
People are willing to contribute to the social good. But they are not willing to tolerate free loaders.
So if some social provision is compulsory and free loaders are penalized then people will be happy irrespective if they agree they disagree with the provision. It becomes a matter of fairness.
On the other hand people will not be happy, even if they agree with the provision, if the free loaders have the upper hand. Again its a matter of fairness.
So it’s easy to figure that voluntary programs like this are not going to work as long as there are free loaders.
This is the fundamental reason why communes and communism failed.

Global warming is causing more and more people to yawn.

Gail Combs

Indur M. Goklany says:
November 12, 2011 at 4:08 pm
One wonders what gave them the notion that they would have 168,000 takers (accuracy to first three significant figures!). I suspect they used some bogus theoretical studies about “willingness to pay.” Anyone know?
_____________________________________
That is the number of democratic voters registered in their service area…. /sarc>

DJ says: November 12, 2011 at 3:49 pm
“Bimbos” is such a harsh term. Let’s use the French expression: “filles de joie”. The French are ever so much more cultured and nuanced than we are. After all, some 75% of their electrical power is nuclear. And, who else would dream of making a garden slug a delivery system for garlic and butter!
(In this economy, you have to admire a young lady who will capitalize on her assets.)
Besides, I’d expect that the PG&E rate payers would rather pay for the assignations than the horror of green power. It would be far, far cheaper and would not destroy their economy. I would like to gloat, but those damn fools in Austin have spent billions on wind power and all it ever got us is rolling blackouts.
Regards,
Steamboat Jack (Jon Jewett’s evil twin)

Gail Combs

Mike Jowsey says:
November 12, 2011 at 5:11 pm
“..capturing methane from cow manure.”
Ruminant methane comes mainly from burping. A bit from flatulence, but afaik nobody is going around with plastic bags wrapping up cowpats to capture methane. But if somebody would send me a grant to study the possibility….
____________________________________
A guy in Leominster MA ran his pick-up truck on composting Chicken Manure. Does that count?

It should be a no brainer to run your waste treatment plant on the methane generated in your digester. You produce cleaner waste water at less cost. The change in equipment pays for itself if the operation is properly sized.

LazyTeenager

DirkH says
I am living amongst idiots.
———
Sounds like DirkH has been reading to many socialist tracts.
“All the world is queer save thee and me, and even thou art a little queer”
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Owen

RS

My wife says that it would have worked if the participants been given a huge special solar powered, brightly lit green halo over their home. We are talking visible for hundreds of feet, if not more.
This would allow the greens to demonstrate their own “superiority” over everyone else in a properly ostentatious manner, which gets more to stoking their core value of self-adoration.
I think it would have worked.

dp

How many trees were spared the (evil) logger’s axe, and how many cow pharts did they collect and where did they put them?

Brian H

RS says:
November 12, 2011 at 6:08 pm
My wife says that it would have worked if the participants been given a huge special solar powered, brightly lit green halo over their home. We are talking visible for hundreds of feet, if not more.
This would allow the greens to demonstrate their own “superiority” over everyone else in a properly ostentatious manner, which gets more to stoking their core value of self-adoration.
I think it would have worked.

I like your wife! Is she as cute as she is perceptive and witty?
🙂

Latitude

RS says:
November 12, 2011 at 6:08 pm
————————————
LOL

DirkH

LazyTeenager says:
November 12, 2011 at 6:06 pm
“DirkH says
I am living amongst idiots.
———
Sounds like DirkH has been reading to many socialist tracts. ”
No I didn’t – if it looks like I lifted that sentence from Das Capital or something, I didn’t… Did Karl Marx use it? You must know, tell me.

DirkH

LazyTeenager, do you expect me to read the biography tome you linked to? I don’t have the time. Don’t know who that Owen is. Is he famous for something? Your grandpa?

Latitude

LazyTeenager said: “People will not voluntarily pay for anything.”
===================================
Of course they do, and do it all the time.
It’s called charity. I think I remember something about red states donating more to charity.
……but the operative word was “more”
“”Robert of Ottawa on November 12, 2011 at 3:13 pm said:
Imagine, people will not voluntarily pay more for electricity.””

We’re all for Saving the Planet. Just don’t ask us to pay anything to do it.

I buy my energy from Origin Energy here in Oz (noted by another above). It costs me a few dollars more to buy 25% renewable energy. For about $250 a year more, I can buy 100% renewable energy.
I do it because I believe in renewable energy. I know it costs more, but it will have to happen sometime, and I can afford it, so I buy the stuff. No biggie.
If every CAGW ‘worrier’ did the same, I happily predict the greenies would have to STFU, because CO2 emissions would go down in developed countries (although I assume they would still bleat about something). Note that in developing countries, they have a lot more to worry about that CO2. Thinks like clean water and food are strangely more important. If any CAGW ‘worrier’ does not buy renewable energy, I refuse to even listen to why they are worried, except perhaps for a laugh.
Our extremely misguided government is about to impose a ruinous tax on us, a ‘Carbon Tax’. I will now refuse to buy renewable energy, as my taxes are now paying far more than I was voluntarily, and much less of that is going toward renewable energy and research. I also plan to reduce my tax bill in any way possible, in defence of this unwanted and unwarranted burden on my income.

LazyTeenager

DirkH says
DirkH on November 12, 2011 at 6:57 pm said:
LazyTeenager, do you expect me to read the biography tome you linked to? I don’t have the time. Don’t know who that Owen is. Is he famous for something? Your grandpa?
———
The quote is rather famous.
Oh and also: Bazinga!!!!

DirkH

Jer0me says:
November 12, 2011 at 7:22 pm
“I do it because I believe in renewable energy. I know it costs more, but it will have to happen sometime, and I can afford it, so I buy the stuff. No biggie.”
It’s not necessary. See Julian Simon’s “The Ultimate Resource”. If it has to happen sometime, price signals will make it happen anyway.
http://www.juliansimon.com/writings/Ultimate_Resource/

Mike Smith

In reality, PG&E and the State have achieved their goals by other means so the program was no longer needed.
It’s much easier to manipulate the basic rate structure than it is to sign up “volunteers” for the ClinmateSmart program.
By charging punitive rates for energy usage above an artificial “baseline” they can tack a whole lot more than $3 onto the typical monthly utility bill. More like $30 without the inconvenience of voluntary registration.
In short, they found a much more cost effective method to screw their customers.

chuck nolan

Gotta love this quote, one of the best denials of reality I’ve ever seen:
“It was a demonstration program, and it’s successfully concluding after meeting its goals,” Romans said. “Certainly we would have loved for more customers to have participated.” said company spokeswoman Katie Romans.
————–
Nobody said what their “goals” were.
Maybe all they required to call the program successful was to:
Determine what percentage of customers would be will to accept a new tax.
Wow, fifteen percent….
TA DA…the program was successful, please send more subsidies and grant money.
Thank you.