Study commissioned by SMUD disparages net metering in favor of utility-scale solar
An energy consulting firm commissioned by the Sacramento Municipal Utility District to study the value of solar in its service territory claimed the current retail rate paid to rooftop solar customers shifts the costs of solar to non-solar customers. Researchers sponsored by the utility found the environmental benefits of customer solar can be achieved more cost-effectively with utility-scale solar.
U.S. senator introduces bill to fund $50 billion in clean energy projects
U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) introduced America’s Clean Future Fund Act, a bill that would provide $50 billion in its first year for investments in clean energy projects to help stimulate the economy and lower emissions. The bill would also provide transition assistance grants to local governments to help former fossil fuel workers find new jobs.
New Jersey releases proposal for solar incentive successor program
Trenton, New Jersey
The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities released a draft proposal for its next-generation Solar Successor program. The new solar incentive model would be a hybrid program using a competitive solicitation approach for large-scale solar projects and a fixed incentive for smaller projects, including residential systems.
DNC removes fossil fuel subsidy ban from platform
The Democratic National Committee removed a statement saying Democrats support removing tax breaks and subsidies for fossil fuels from the final version of the party’s platform, according to The Huffington Post. The DNC said it was erroneously included in the first version.
Clean Energy Group recommends Sunshot-style strategy for storage
The nonprofit Clean Energy Group proposed a series of new policy actions the federal government can take to grow the energy storage market. The actions follow the successful Sunshot program that adopted hard cost reduction targets for solar adoption and provided grants to support new solar-supportive policies at the state and local levels.
Path to 100 Coalition supports Illinois governor’s energy reform principles
The Path to 100 Coalition of Illinois announced its support for Gov. J. B. Pritzker’s recently released energy reform goals to move the state toward 100% clean energy by 2050. The set of principles called “Putting Consumers and Climate First” includes goals to reform net metering and interconnection costs.
Senate Democrats release report outlining climate action steps to stimulate economy
Senate Democrats released a report calling on Congress to increase federal spending on climate action to at least 2% of GDP annually and ensure that at least 40% of the benefits from these investments help disadvantaged communities. The report encourages the government to find ways to make solar and other renewables accessible to all Americans.
Audubon South Carolina report calls the state an “unstoppable giant” on increasing adoption of solar energy
Columbia, South Carolina
In a new report, Audubon South Carolina says solar has flourished in the state thanks to strong net-metering policies. The study also identified areas for improvement, including inconsistent solar policies among investor-owned utilities and electric co-ops
Advocates say over 200 shovel-ready community solar projects await legislative action in Pennsylvania
Current utility laws in Pennsylvania prohibit multi-stakeholder solar projects, but bipartisan legislation working through the statehouse could reform that rule and open the state to community solar for the first time. The Coalition for Community Solar Access is working to get the legislation passed this fall.
Coalition of solar advocates launches Local Energy for All campaign
Solar advocates, including Vote Solar and Solar United Neighbors, have launched a national campaign called Local Energy for All that aims to bring more rooftop solar and community solar installations to communities. The campaign will encourage federal and state governments to accelerate the development of a more decentralized energy system.
San José mayor and L.A. supervisor call for utility “exit fee” reform
San José Mayor Sam Liccardo and Los Angeles County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl asked the California PUC to reverse its decision to allow the “Big Three” investor-owned utilities to levy expensive exit fees on consumers who try to switch to a different energy provider. Exit fees can prohibit consumers from choosing greener energy options like community choice aggregators.
California Public Utilities Commission begins net metering modification proceedings
The CPUC kicked off its NEM 3 proceedings to consider additional modifications to the state’s distributed solar + storage policy. CALSSA is warning the solar industry that utilities are already activating their channels to encourage the CPUC to cut incentives for solar + storage. The net metering 3.0 decision is scheduled to take more than a year to conclude.