Thursday, 18 July 2024

Wiggins introduces legislation encouraging more solar power generation

SACRAMENTO – State Sen. Patricia Wiggins (D-Santa Rosa) has introduced new legislation to encourage more production of solar power by compensating smaller producers for all of the solar power that they generate.


Currently, residential electric utility customers can participate in the state’s solar program, known as the California Solar Initiative (CSI), and receive subsidies for the installation of photovoltaic panels to produce solar power.


Residents may also participate in “net-energy metering,” a program that allows electrical customers to receive credits for the amount of solar power they produce against their electric bills; however, any solar power they produce beyond their use is returned to their respective utility providers for free.


“At a time when the state has enacted landmark legislation aimed at significantly reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and requiring 33 percent of our energy to be provided by renewable energy, we also need to encourage as many clean-power producers as possible to put this power on the electrical grid,” Wiggins said in introducing her legislation, Senate Bill 7.


SB 7 would not only allow residential utility customers to continue to receive credits for the solar power produced for their own use, it would also allow them to contribute even more solar-based power to the electrical grid.


Any power produced beyond a customer’s own use would be compensated (either by credit or payment) at the same rate a utility provider would pay for power from any other source, referred to as the “Market Price Referents.”


“My bill offers a fair and reasonable path to increased production of solar power, and it constitutes a win-win-win for solar power producers, utility providers and our environment,” Wiggins said.


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