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NC is Newest Net-Metering Battleground

February 25, 2014 By Linda Hardesty

In January, Duke Energy indicated it will seek to reduce how much North Carolina solar customers are paid for generating electricity from solar panels. On February 24, 2014, the North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association (NCSEA) filed a motion for disclosure and equitable relief at the North Carolina Utilities Commission.

In the motion, NCSEA asserts that Duke Energy’s recent statements that net metering shifts costs “from those who want solar panels to those who do not” are having a “chilling” impact on the rooftop solar market in North Carolina. In a statement attached to the motion, solar installers claim that because Duke Energy is sending negative messaging about net-metering without having filed anything definitive at the Utilities Commission, installers are not able to provide clear answers to potential customers.

NCSEA is asking the Utilities Commission to order Duke Energy to provide the analysis supporting the utility’s claims that net metering is unfair. NCSEA’s motion goes on to argue that the negative effect of Duke Energy’s statements regarding net-metering is particularly damaging because it comes as the window of opportunity to make use of the state tax credit is quickly closing.

Recently, the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) instituted a charge on future customers who install rooftop solar panels and directed Arizona Public Service (APS) to provide quarterly reports on the pace of rooftop solar adoption to assist the Commission in considering further increases. The charge of $0.70 per kilowatt will be effective on Jan. 1, 2014, and is estimated to collect $4.90 per month from a typical future rooftop solar customer to help pay for their use of the electricity grid.


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