San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) customers, who already pay some of the highest rates in the country, will soon begin seeing even higher bills. The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has approved a 5.7% annual revenue hike for SDG&E for 2019 through 2021. In a unanimous 5-0 vote on September 26, 2019, the commission raised SDG&E’s annual revenue requirement to $1.99 billion. That represents an additional $107.4 million the utility will collect from its customers each year.
With the increase, the typical customer can expect to pay $1.10 more on their monthly electric bill. According to a spokesman, the measure will help SDG&E strengthen its wildfire safety measures. This comes at a time when California ratepayers are being forced to contribute $10.5 billion over 15 years to cover half of damages from future wildfires caused by utility company equipment.
But homeowners have a way to fight back against the utilities: solar plus energy storage. By pairing solar panels with a storage system, households can save the solar power they generate for use when there is no sunshine—including evening hours, when Time of Use rates are often twice as high. These systems also provide critical backup power, keeping homes comfortable and connected in the event of a blackout.
One of the most innovative energy storage solutions is the NeoVolta NV14, manufactured in San Diego. The NV14’s advanced lithium iron phosphate chemistry is designed for safety and a longer life cycle than ordinary lithium ion batteries. The system has a high storage capacity of 14.4 kilowatt hours (kWh) and delivers 7.6 kW of continuous power, easily outperforming competitors.
The NV14 can connect with any residential solar installation—new or existing, AC or DC. Homeowners who require even greater storage capacity can add a second battery and avoid the expense of installing another entire system (inverter and battery), which will be available in November 2019. With NeoVolta’s NV14, homeowners can design a system that is specific to their needs.
“The sheer greed of California’s utility giants is breathtaking,” said Brent Willson, CEO of NeoVolta. “SDG&E is pushing to quadruple its minimum monthly charge, and we’re already handing over billions to help cover their liability the next time their faulty equipment starts a wildfire.
“But by pairing solar with the powerful, long-lasting NV14 energy storage system, homeowners can see significant savings on their monthly bill and protect themselves from future rate manipulations by the utility companies.”