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"Feed in tariffs" in South Africa???


gpigeon
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It is a long time since I was in SA....I went there for a 2 week holiday in 1972 and stayed for 7 years.I still have many great memories of my times there around Hillbrow!!!

Just a few general questions re electrical power in SA....

Does SA have feed in tariffs? (ie payment for power fed back to the grid)

If so, how much per kWh?

Cost of power purchased from the grid?

Is Eskom still the only supplier of power?

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5 minutes ago, gpigeon said:

No replies???? Very srange! I must be asking the wrong questions.

Hi Pigeon. I only know of 3 Guys that might have this answer, and I think all three is on holiday, two of them did not logon since last Sunday, and the third makes quick pitstops. 

@pilotfish, @The Terrible Triplett and @plonkster, spoke about feed in tariffs for Capetown and Johannesburg in the past. Mentioning their names like in the beginning of this sentence will sent them a notification that we are talking about them, so they should pop in in the next few days and i am sure they will answer your question. 

After the holidays all should be back to normal. 

 

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Does SA have feed in tariffs? (ie payment for power fed back to the grid)

Sort of, depends on muni.  Currently not in favour of the grid supplier, in many cases, so not much point.

 

If so, how much per kWh?

Rates depend on muni or Eskom.

 

Cost of power purchased from the grid?

Depends on Muni 

 

Is Eskom still the only supplier of power?

Eskom still sole supplier, although muni's can resell, at higher cost.

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3 hours ago, shanghailoz said:

 

"Depends on Muni "

 

Thanks for the replies gents.

I gather that "Muni" might be municipality????? Correct?

"Jaco"....yes, you are right...many folks are away on leave and have better things to do that answer my queries.

I was getting a little worried that I may have upset someone. I know that I can upset my wife without even saying a word! But then, she is an ex Joburg "meisie" and still after 40 yrs of marriage she doesn't get my Aussie sense of humour!!!!

 

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On 2018/12/25 at 10:23 PM, gpigeon said:

It is a long time since I was in SA....I went there for a 2 week holiday in 1972 and stayed for 7 years.I still have many great memories of my times there around Hillbrow!!!

Just a few general questions re electrical power in SA....

Does SA have feed in tariffs? (ie payment for power fed back to the grid) Yes but it  varies from Muni to Muni. and in some instances like mine in small print - up to and equal to your purchase

If so, how much per kWh? my credit not a refund and not bankable is R0.72per kwh

Cost of power purchased from the grid? up to 600kw = R1,69 per kwh and above jumps to R2.12 per kwh

Is Eskom still the only supplier of power? Yep unfortunately - i chose to earlier this year to disable net metering and rather run a decentralized grid, so now i pay nothing and receive nothing..

 

Edited by Mike
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On 2018/12/25 at 10:23 PM, gpigeon said:

Does SA have feed in tariffs? (ie payment for power fed back to the grid)

If so, how much per kWh?

Cost of power purchased from the grid?

[Joburg] In order to access the piddly feed in tariff of 42.79c/kWh you will need to jump through various hoops of diminishing diameter in order to register as SSEG, and then you will be forced to migrate to Time Of Use metering - with very high monthly fixed cost of R400-R500/m before any power consumed, and very high power costs when you need it and low power costs when you dont need it.

It is just not worth it, which is by design by City Power because they dont want high earners (reliable payers) installing PV systems, they need the money for cross subsidies.

COJ Tariff - TOU.pdf

Embedded Generation Tariff.pdf

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Cape Town doesn't have FIT. Technically nobody is allowed to do that, because legislation says only Eskom can buy form you. What Cape Town will do is rebate you on your consumption, and you must remain a net-consumer as well. You could probably see the rebate as a kind of feed-in tariff if you want to. Cape Town credits you 84.95c for each kwh you feed in. But remember that you pay a grid connection fee of R14.21/day, as opposed to around R150/month on the home tariff and nothing on Domestic tariff (I suspect Cape Town will eventually migrate more or even all people to Home tariff though).

So even though they have a tariff of some kind, it might not be worth it. You have to "sell" them a good 350kwh to cover the extra connection fee, and since you must remain a net consumer that means you must buy at least 350kwh from them too. So you will have to do the math, but to me it seems far better to use your own electricity as far as possible to remain out of the >=600kwh bracket, in that way you essentially get R2.56 (in savings) for each kwh you generate :-)

Edited by plonkster
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9 hours ago, pilotfish said:

[Joburg] In order to access the piddly feed in tariff of 42.79c/kWh you will need to jump through various hoops of diminishing diameter in order to register as SSEG, and then you will be forced to migrate to Time Of Use metering - with very high monthly fixed cost of R400-R500/m before any power consumed, and very high power costs when you need it and low power costs when you dont need it.

It is just not worth it, which is by design by City Power because they dont want high earners (reliable payers) installing PV systems, they need the money for cross subsidies.

COJ Tariff - TOU.pdf

Embedded Generation Tariff.pdf

@Pilotfish, CoJ's piddly tariff is about as good as it gets. In march 2017 Tshwane's Mayor Solly Msimang got up on his soap box and waxed lyrical about Tshwane becoming the "solar capital of South Africa" - this from a municipality that it unable to even publish its electricity tariffs until midway through the financial year.  NERSA has subsequently approved a 10c/kWh FIT ("Credit reverse energy charge") for Tshwane (yes, that's not a typo, 10 cents per kWh), so once you have parted with the necessary "Access Charge" it is simply impossible for residential-scale rooftop PV to break even. http://www.nersa.org.za/Admin/Document/Editor/file/Electricity/PricingandTariffs/201819/Gauteng Province - Approved tariffs.pdf

Our electricity supply bodies are by-and-large a disgrace.  They are unable to get the basics right (billing, maintenance, tariff design) - we should not hold our breath waiting for meaningful FITs to improve the economics of rooftop solar.

I believe we may see yet another technology leap-frog in this regard: the improving economics of energy storage present an opportunity to focus solar system designs around self-consumption optimisation (with inherent power security benefits in the face of unreliable electricity supply).

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Many thanks to those that replied. I think I now have the general picture.....

Just as a rough comparison....given that A$1 = 1R (don't know what happened????I think when I was there they were roughly the same!!!) The domesic power price here in NSW is around 30c/kWh and I get paid 20c/kWh for every kWh I feed back to the grid. Connection fee is around $1.40 per day.

The feed in tariff was originally 66c/kWh so since installation in 2010 my 10kW system has returned around A$58,000 but of course the purhase price was a lot higher then. (about A$45k)

It will be interesting to see how FIT's go in the future as more and more peoiple install solar PV's.

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I wonder how reverse feed of serious power into substations (including switchgear and transformers) will affect the installed equipment. Especially if they are old.

In theory (for me) the resupply back to the reticulation systems will work if you only supply your neighbourhood.

I would love to hear the electrical engineers point of view on this.

The mine I worked on (retired now) spent millions on a mW solar installation and never saw a cent return for all their investment (apart from being classified as a capital expenditure). It was supposed to save them money by supplying the closest plant. But the monthly Eskom bill did not come down.

And they had an army of engineering personnel to oversee this. Oh, and there were quite a lot of teething problems - did not go down well with management (even though we were friends).

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4 hours ago, Johandup said:

I wonder how reverse feed of serious power into substations (including switchgear and transformers) will affect the installed equipment. Especially if they are old.

In the context of residential rooftop, this scenario does not arise. Regulations limit the size of a grid-tied PV system to 25% of the incoming supply CB rating, so even with pretty extensive uptake, there is very little probability of reverse energy through a sub-station.  In principle the only effect is a reduction in load on the substation and reticulation network, which should be a good thing.  The only potential issue is reactive energy, as a small power factor displacement on the load side can become a far bigger issue if a significant portion of that load is being supplied on site.

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12 hours ago, gpigeon said:

The feed in tariff was originally 66c/kWh so since installation in 2010 my 10kW system has returned around A$58,000 but of course the purhase price was a lot higher then. (about A$45k)

You Aussies are really onto a good thing😄. Those who had the foresight to capitalize on incentivised solar feed-in contracts are reaping a fine reward.

As the cost of grid-tied PV has reduced well into the space of “no-brained” economic viability, the need (and the appetite) for incentivised or even attractive FITs has evaporated.  On the contrary, Munics and Utilities are without answers to the Utility Death Spiral, and rooftop solar is a massive contributor to this.  For those looking to invest in residential solar, my advice is to build a solution around optimized self-consumption.

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Compared to Oz, SA is vehemently anti-solar.

This is fairly obvious from the tariff's.  So, most people are going under the radar, and feeding back with older meters that roll backwards. 
Cape Town (probably the only muni which is run semi decently) has finally cottoned onto this and is mandating everyone register their solar or get fined, even offgrid people like me.

They actually don't need to do that, what they need to do is install pre-paid meters everywhere like they were supposed to in 2007, as mandated by NERSA.

 

Here there is no carrot  /stick, its just a stick.

 

Eskom is threatening to raise prices 15% yearly for the next 3 years; we're already at the point where storage + solar is cheaper than grid, so that may just be the tipping point.

The paying customers are gatvol of getting charged while the majority don't pay. Eskom hasn't really planned for this either.  Death spiral is coming whether they like it or not.

 

I could write pages and pages about this (I have done on other forums like mybb), but suffice to say, the future isn't bright.  No maintenance, no money for maintenance, a far too large inefficient labour force thats overpaid at Eksom, and a (paying) customer base thats rapidly emigrating or going offgrid.  The World Bank should be fucking shot too for loaning a questionable amount of money for two monstrous coal stations in a region that has insufficient water.  Corruption all the way...
 

 

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1 hour ago, shanghailoz said:

Cape Town (probably the only muni which is run semi decently) has finally cottoned onto this and is mandating everyone register their solar or get fined, even offgrid people like me.

Yup, it smacks of desperation and strong-arm tactics. Has anyone had a look at the legality of attempts to regulate off-grid solar? I am not aware of what law that they would rely upon to have any right to demand you you register an off-grid system, any more than they could demand that you register your generator, solar garden gnome or electric toothbrush. I am aware that NERSA was making noises about trying to get law to this effect put in place, but I don’t think they’ve got that right yet.

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CoCT are a municipality, they can easily put a bylaw in that says we need to register solar.

In fact, thats exactly what they did.  Allegedly.

 

Most articles quote this - "This is according to regulations noted in the new electricity supply by-law which is due to come into effect in January 2019." or this "Changes to the City of Cape Town Electricity Supply By-Laws of 2010 now make it compulsory to register certain solar installations with the City. This affects all properties that fall within the City of Cape Town municipal boundary."

 

Has anyone seen these bylaw's; when was it voted in, and by whom?

 

http://www.miltons.law.za/registration-of-solar-installations-in-the-city-of-cape-town/

 

 

Ironically, I *do* see a bylaw that clearly states solar hot water installs must be registered.  Still looking for something regarding solar.  Wouldn't put it past CoCT to not actually have promulgated a bylaw.

 

http://resource.capetown.gov.za/documentcentre/Documents/Bylaws and policies/Water Amendment By-law 2018.pdf (page 15)

(7) The owner must notify the City when any of the following plumbing components are either installed or changed:

(a) a fixed water heater;
(b) heat pump installations; and (c) solar hot water panels,

 

 

Edited by shanghailoz
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Ooh, this type of thing really gets my anti-establishment juices flowing!

This is certainly worth soliciting legal opinion - I will bounce this off a couple of tame lawyers I know with some experience in this field.

My take on it is this: for a Munic to pass a baylaw, it would surely have to satisfy basic requirements of reasonableness, constitutional consistency, etc. For silly instance, they could not pass a bylaw forbidding the wearing of blue shirts in public on Tuesdays. My stance (and this is strictly limited to off-grid solar - they have every right to regulate embedded generators operating in parallel with the utility supply), is that an off-grid PV installation on private property has NOTHING to do with them, and that they should fu.. I mean bugger off. This also applies to solar thermal and heat pumps - who the hell do they think they are!!

i would accept an appeal for the voluntary reporting of such installations, for the purposes of statistics and planning, but that’s where it ends.

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3 hours ago, shanghailoz said:

The owner must notify the City when any of the following plumbing components are either installed or changed:

(a) a fixed water heater;
(b) heat pump installations; and (c) solar hot water panels,

And this is simply bonkers. This requires the City be notified every time a burst geyser is replaced. Questions which come to mind are:

Why!?!

How would they enforce it?!?

WTF?!?

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56 minutes ago, Power Punk said:

Ooh, this type of thing really gets my anti-establishment juices flowing!

This is certainly worth soliciting legal opinion - I will bounce this off a couple of tame lawyers I know with some experience in this field.

My take on it is this: for a Munic to pass a baylaw, it would surely have to satisfy basic requirements of reasonableness, constitutional consistency, etc. For silly instance, they could not pass a bylaw forbidding the wearing of blue shirts in public on Tuesdays. My stance (and this is strictly limited to off-grid solar - they have every right to regulate embedded generators operating in parallel with the utility supply), is that an off-grid PV installation on private property has NOTHING to do with them, and that they should fu.. I mean bugger off. This also applies to solar thermal and heat pumps - who the hell do they think they are!!

i would accept an appeal for the voluntary reporting of such installations, for the purposes of statistics and planning, but that’s where it ends.

I am with you on this!

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Be very afraid of desperate people.

And I am referring to the current guvament in all their different forms (disguises).

They will do EVERYTHING in (legal or not untill they are challenged right up to the highest court) to retain control of purse strings. They are desperate for every cent (and we know why).

There is already a public resistance to transfer money from our pockets to theirs. It is public knowledge. We hold the power, at least till the exchange rate hits new highs.

Much of what is asked for is totally not relevant for running the country.

I would insist that my municipal representative start voting against proposals like this. There is this perception in our country that political representatives do not work for us.

Its time to prove them wrong....

Etolls is a good example of public power.

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3 hours ago, Johandup said:

Be very afraid of desperate people.

And I am referring to the current guvament in all their different forms (disguises).

They will do EVERYTHING in (legal or not untill they are challenged right up to the highest court) to retain control of purse strings. They are desperate for every cent (and we know why).

There is already a public resistance to transfer money from our pockets to theirs. It is public knowledge. We hold the power, at least till the exchange rate hits new highs.

Much of what is asked for is totally not relevant for running the country.

I would insist that my municipal representative start voting against proposals like this. There is this perception in our country that political representatives do not work for us.

Its time to prove them wrong....

Etolls is a good example of public power.

Do you know what is happening in Zim right now? Every cent you earn goes straight to the bank where the government takes a cut. Then when you want to buy bread, they take another cut. This is on top of tax and vat. You can't withdraw money, everything is "virtual". If people send you money from other countries they take a cut. I am not referring to bank fees or exchange rate fees, but a tax on top of money received, and money paid for goods.

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On 2018/12/28 at 10:12 AM, Power Punk said:

The only potential issue is reactive energy

That is a particularly interesting topic, indeed. Especially since most parallel generators are required to do a power factor better than 0.9 (if I recall correctly). So whatever you offset usually tends to make the other bad loads (relatively to the whole) a lot worse. Q often remains the same, and you decrease the P side of the triangle... :-)

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