Let us think long term to a time when all energy is renewable, does not contribute to climate change, and is sustainable. In that time, every house will have rooftop solar and storage. We will have to be interlinked to provide stability for areas that are temporarily without their primary source of energy, e.g., clouds. How do we pay for the grid, then? Simple, everyone has a grid connection fee based upon the size of their electrical panel. Everyone pays for any deficit energy consumed and get compensated for excess. Of course there’s a differential between the two to pay for administration.
We are at a crossroad of how to get there from here. The utilities are fighting (a losing battle) for their very existence. Their ego and greed, too. The record industry did the same (what’s a record?).
But the rooftop solar industry is being greedy, too. Rooftop solar does not pencil out at wholesale prices. Worse yet, when enough solar comes online, solar energy providers will, at times, have to pay to dump their excess.
And that will be a boon to the storage industry. Sure, storage is expensive, but when you’re paid to take energy and sell it back at night, it will be a profitable business.
Bottom line is that we’ll probably pay the same for energy when that time comes. The sooner greed is put aside, the sooner we’ll get there.