S.C.E. Raising Rates Again

Your energy costs are on the rise again. In order for Southern California Edison (SCE) to achieve it’s goal of obtaining 33% of their power from renewable sources by 2020. The cost of constructing utility scale power plants is expensive and the changing rates have also been reflected. The highest energy users will see a slight decrease in their rates per kWh while tier 1-3 will see a dramatic increase. According to the SCE website, “The average household can expect a 5-10% increase on their monthly bill.” By lessening their dependence on coal and nuclear power plants, SCE makes a step towards a more sustainable future.

Each unit of energy is measured and purchased by kilowatts (kWh). SCE measures how households use their energy by lighting, cooking, heating and refrigeration. Currently the rates in Southern California change depending on how much energy a household uses. Energy is split into tiers. Below is a sample chart of how tiers are priced (actual prices may vary):

Tier

Tier 1

Tier 2

Tier 3

Tier 4

Cents per kWh

15¢

19¢

28¢

32¢

Tier 4 is now the most expensive rate for households using the most energy while Tier 1 is the lowest rate for households that do not use a lot of energy. These tiers are the base of a household's energy bill. Energy rates have been on the rise since the 1970’s due to the increasing population and consumption levels. SCE stated on their website,

Investor-owned electric utilities, such as SCE, are required to predict what they will spend to buy energy from a variety of sources including renewable power and natural gas, and set rates accordingly. If we spend less than we forecast, the money is returned to customers as offsets for other costs. If we spend more, then we need to recover the difference. This year, energy costs were higher than we predicted, so we need to collect the additional money to cover the costs of the electricity sources. Costs to generate or buy power are passed through to customers without a price mark-up. We do not make a profit from this.

SCE provides, rebates and incentives, save power days, income-qualified programs, energy saving tips and budget assistance to help customers save on their energy bill. Check with your energy provider on how to save money.

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