Goodbye central utilities, hello home solar!

The old model of centralized electricity production is being replaced by localized, distributive energy production — much to the dismay of large, centralized utilities, whose business model is not only outmoded, but anti-competitive and fundamentally un-American. [Flickr Creative Commons Photo By John E. Amos]
editors-blog-entry3Imagine a world in which the Big Utility monopoly on energy production and distribution and storage was no more. In its place is a world characterized by you-and-me, localized energy production and distribution and storage. Thinking about this makes me absolutely giddy!

That’s the way I felt today when I read a report by Greentechmedia that Germany’s biggest utility, E.ON., is completely retooling in respone to the rise of distributed energy production in that country.

As Greentechmedia puts it in the lead to its story, “Executives from E.ON, Germany’s biggest utility, announced plans today to leave the centralized power business in order to focus exclusively on distributed energy and ’empowering’ customers.”


Sorry for the caps, but I strongly dislike business models of any kind which involve monopolies and power concentrated in the hands of a few.

That’s why I love having a home solar system that produces enough electricity to cover 100 percent of my home electric use AND 15,000 miles of driving annually in an electric car.

That’s not complete energy indepdence — I recognize that my food, consumer items I purchase, etc. take energy to distribute. But it sure feels good. And I absolutely love sticking it to the Big Guys. LOVE IT! — especially to Big Oil, which hasn’t seen a cent from me in 10 months!

More from the CEO of E.ON. –>

“Renewables aren’t just revolutionizing power generation. Together with other technological innovations, they’re changing the role of customers, who can already use solar panels to produce a portion of their energy. As energy storage devices become more prevalent, customers will be able to make themselves largely independent of the conventional power and gas supply network.” 

Yes, yes, yes! I love it!

No, I don’t expect that Big Utilities in the U.S., or elsewhere, will eagerly change. They are fighting against power democratization, most notably by trying to roll back net-metering. But I love what’s happening in Germany, because it’s going to come here — I know it.

What I love even more is the way in which electric vehicles change the equation for the consumer/individual in potentially radical ways — think home solar, home battery storage of electricity, vehicle-to-grid technology, etc. — ways that are sure to disrupt not only Big Utilities but Big Oil as well!!

Solar went on our rooftop in June 2010.

Related articles–>