when you said most of what you're seeing is mass stupidity because that's all your comment is. It's pure stupid and there's others here who are simply jumping on board because they don't know any better (like those you just called stupid). I think a little factual info is in order.
The norm for many years now has been to be able to count on the rebates as passed into law so why should he be denigrated for not assuming the regulators would be captured and the entire cost negated? That's stupid.
A $250 monthly electric bill in Hawaii translates to around 640 kWh per month where the national average is around 750. This means he likely either really cut back or he insulated and cut back some. Knocking him for wasting power is stupid.
PV doesn't just fail at the 20 year mark, it fades a percent or two each year and can be economic out to 50 years. At $8/watt installed cost for PV in Hawaii, a $35k system is only around 4.375 kW. At their rate of $0.351/kWh and 6 hours sun average, he'll likely return double his cost in its 20 year 'guaranteed' lifespan and $200k in its more likely 50 year usable lifespan. This is even before we count on 3% inflation of the utility rate (low for recent times) raising the price of power had he not gone solar. Because of this, it's just stupid to shout misleading information in all caps to justify knocking the amortization here, wouldn't you think?
With the current crop of PV panels (his 18 panels are likely 240-250 watt) at 17% efficiency, the carbon footprint is around 20-40 gCO2eq/kWh which means in 2.5 years, it's produced the same energy it cost to build and install it. Inferring misleading info about energy payback or carbon footprint after its been debunked for years is stupid.
To be clear, solar does need a shot of new technology to help its adoption and grid cooperation levels. However, the utility companies are more complicit in this problem than the homeowners. They can make small equipment changes to make bi-directional power monitoring just as easy as one-way. Most of that equipment gets replaced every other decade anyway and they have foreseen this problem for longer than that so half should have already been upgraded. The problem is that this would have led to an instant, free market for electricity where the user-generated power would be valued equal to the utility's power. After all, it is out grid. We've paid for it numerous times through subsidies and monopoly grants. ...and its just stupid for us to allow them to push us deeper into their monopoly and longer.
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