Morning Brief: Utilities across the US battle equitable net metering and value-of-solar


SMUD, the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, commissioned a study that found the net energy metering (NEM) credit should be reduced to 3 to 7 cents/kWh. CalSSA finds that the study was flawed and designed to discredit the value of customer-sited solar to the utility, community, and environment. The trade organization contends that the general manager at SMUD has looked to garner public support to make cuts to NEM. Other directors on the SMUD Board, who oversee the utility, are supporters of solar. Go here to register or email a request to give public comment during the meeting. Source: California Solar & Storage Association

Critics say Michigan utility needs to show its work on solar energy rate: Consumers Energy failed to develop data and facts to justify slashing solar credits almost in half, challengers say. Michigan solar advocates say Consumers Energy has failed to justify a proposed cut in the rate it pays for solar power generated on customers’ rooftops. The criticism comes as Michigan regulators consider the utility’s latest rate case, which calls for significantly decreasing the solar rate while also increasing how much residential customers pay for grid electricity. Source: ENN

There is a long list of utilities fighting against fairly valued distributed solar. We just covered how Utah’s Public Service Commission will begin hearings to determine exactly how much electricity generated from rooftop solar is worth — is it worth 1.5 cents/kWh as the utility contends or is it worth 22.6 cents/kWh, as Vote Solar figures?

An anti-rooftop solar representative accepted over $20,000 from Florida utilities — Florida Representative Lawrence McClure asked the Florida PSC to review the rules and regulations related to customer-owned solar and net metering. The request echoes utility claims that rooftop solar is a threat to low to middle-income Floridians, and followed McClure’s direct communication with Florida’s IOUs. Source: Energy and Policy Institute

Pennsylvania voters overwhelmingly want the General Assembly to pass legislation authorizing local community solar projects, according to a new poll conducted by Susquehanna Polling and Research. Nearly 80% of Pennsylvania voters believe the legislature should pass a bill that gives consumers the option to enroll in community solar projects. These projects would allow residents and business owners to sign up to purchase electricity from small, local solar installations, many of which are co-located on nearby farms. Subscribers then receive credit on their electricity bills for their share of the power produced. Pennsylvania’s utility laws currently block community solar projects. Source: Community Solar Access

Don’t forget to register for the next pv magazine webinar: Is your company capturing the 2020 safe harbor? In partnership with Clean Energy Associates, the webinar will discuss the IRS’ Safe Harbor Provision for Solar Energy Projects and how to make sure you’re take advantage of it.

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