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RPS Webinar: Ending the Solar Tug of War: Can There Be Common Ground on Net Metering?

October 15, 2014

2:00pm — 3:00pm EDT

Net energy metering has recently been a hot topic in many states, with solar advocates and utilities sometimes expressing very different views of the appropriateness of retaining current net metering rules. This webinar explored whether there are policy approaches that can gain broad support by simultaneously supporting continued vigorous solar development and protecting utilities’ core interests.

Jim Kennerly of the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center discussed a recent report he co-authored on Rethinking Standby and Fixed Cost Charges: Regulatory and Rate Design Pathways to Deeper Solar Cost Reductions. That report recommends an integrated approach including revenue decoupling (allowing utilities to ensure recovery of their costs, meet investors’ expectations, and encourage customers to save energy), a minimum monthly contribution (allowing utilities to recover some revenue from customers who are zero net energy users), and time-of-use pricing (providing both solar and non-solar customers with transparent utility cost information). Jim also discussed other “win-win” approaches for solar PV and utilities. You can see a brief op-ed on his perspective here.

Susan Glick of Sunrun commented on Jim’s presentation and discuss the perspective of The Alliance for Solar Choice (TASC), a national rooftop solar advocacy organization. She also discussed compromise legislation that was introduced in Massachusetts earlier this year and that received support from a broad spectrum of solar stakeholders. The webinar was hosted by CESA Executive Director Warren Leon.

The report that Jim Kennerly referenced during the webinar, "Rethinking Standby and Fixed Cost Charges: Regulatory and Rate Design Pathways to Deeper Solar Cost Reductions," is available online here.

The WE Energies study mentioned by Susan Glick that shows solar is a financial benefit to all ratepayers is available online by following these steps:

1) Go to http://psc.wi.gov/apps35/ERF_search/default.aspx
2) Type in docket 05-UR-107 (this is the We Energies rate case docket)
3) Search for the document Ex.-RENEW-Rabago-25

Slides from this webinar are available as a pdf here.

Categories: Policy, Finance

Related Project(s): Renewable Portfolio Standards and the RPS Collaborative

Speakers:

  • Jim Kennerly, Senior Policy Analyst, North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center
  • Susan Glick, Senior Manager for Public Policy, Sunrun