The U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative has launched the “Solar in Your Community”, a challenge to inspire hundreds of local teams across the country to participate in bringing solar programs and projects to their communities. It aims to expand the solar market to a diverse array of new consumers, including low- and moderate-income customers, and nonprofit community-serving organizations.
Solar supporters in Florida scored a major victory this November by defeating utility-backed Amendment 1. The ballot initiative would have paved the way for Florida utilities to dismantle net metering for solar customers. This would have severely stunted the state’s distributed roof top solar market.
While the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has been retiring old coal plants or investing in expensive pollution controls to keep other coal plants operational, it has primarily focused on replacing any lost generation capacity with its preferred version of “clean energy” – nuclear and natural gas. However, TVA is moving further into the renewable energy [...]
Former four-term South Carolina Congressman Gresham Barrett is joining with Sunrun to launch the Palmetto Conservative Solar Coalition. Their over-arching goal is to build on the momentum generated by the industry’s rapid growth spawned by unanimous passage in 2014 of “Act 236” by the South Carolina legislature and signed into law by Republican Gov. Nicki Haley. That law allows for solar sales by third parties and enables net metering.
With the defeat of the utility-sponsored anti-solar Amendment 1 in Florida, we are wondering what the utilities’ next step will be. Will they engage with stakeholders to put more sun into the Sunshine State? If they don’t – we can expect more scapegoating of rooftop solar. The technical foundation was recently laid out in a [...]
We are excited to announce that Floridians rejected the deceptive, utility-backed Amendment 1, which would have halted solar development by paving the way for utilities to penalize solar customers. As a founding member of Floridians for Solar Choice (FSC), the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE) has been leading efforts to bring more solar energy to Florida. Over [...]
Late on November 7th, a local Lafayette, Louisiana newspaper (The Independent) posted a story: “About-face: LUS seeks repeal of ‘solar tax’ ordinance”. Lafayette is restoring its smart solar policy!
But this past August, our local electric utility company passed perhaps the worst solar power policy in the south. Lafayette Utilities System (LUS) introduced an extremely complicated electric, water and sewer rate increase the same week historic, 1,000-year flooding occurred in Louisiana. The new rate structure for net metered customers, including solar power families like mine, is likely to double monthly electric bills, and double the length of time it takes for a solar panel system to pay for itself. The new policy effectively acts as a giant tax on solar power. Solar tax credits are being phased out, and when coupled with LUS’s new solar tax, it is unlikely that solar power systems would ever pay for themselves.
This is a guest post from David Pomerantz, executive director of the Energy and Policy Institute. Prior to joining EPI, David spent eight years working with Greenpeace to move the electric sector away from fossil fuels and towards renewable energy. Click here for the original post. The Consumer Energy Alliance, which you may know from greatest hits [...]
Thanks to weak or non-existent policies, inconsistent incentives, and a myriad of other excuses, the Southeast, as a whole, has yet to live up to its high solar potential. The last several months have brought some interesting developments though, some good and some challenging. Here’s a quick overview of the key takeaways, from North to South.