Thursday, July 29, 2021

Play

Advocates for home- and community-based services urge Congress to invest in what's become known as the "care economy," and U.S. Senate votes to advance a bipartisan infrastructure plan.

Play

Senators reach a deal on an infrastructure package, Walmart will offer free college tuition to its employees, and some Republican governors are rejecting new CDC mask-wearing guidelines.

Solar Advocates Shudder at Proposal They Call "Bad Deal" for KY Consumers

Play

Monday, March 6, 2017   

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Backlash from solar users and advocates has slowed a proposal in the Kentucky Senate to change the rules on net metering – the way utilities and consumers with rooftop solar trade energy.

The power companies want to pay a lower rate for the excess power they buy from solar households than they charge those households as electric customers.

Jeremy Coxon, vice president of SunWind Power Systems, which has been installing residential solar systems in the greater Louisville area for 12 years, says utility companies are "trying to maintain their monopolies." He stresses without net metering, it would take homeowners a lot longer to pay off their solar investment.

"It makes it really difficult to financially justify a solar array when your competition, essentially, gets to set the value of your goods,” he states. “That's fundamentally un-American."

Kentucky's electric cooperatives, on the other hand, say the legislation is needed "to plan responsibly for future energy needs." The 26 co-ops maintain their non-solar members "shouldn't be forced to subsidize people who want to use solar power." But supporters of net metering say the cost is minuscule.

Sustainable energy consultant Andy McDonald says he crunched cost data shared by KU and LG and E, which provide power to nearly a million customers.

"They're claiming that this is shifted onto all of the ratepayers,” he states. “But, at most, it's like 5 millionths of a cent per kilowatt hour that's being shifted. I mean, it's an infinitesimal amount of money."

Coxon agrees and says the power companies fail to weigh the positives, such as solar's contribution to the power grid during times of peak demand.

He maintains Senate Bill 214 would stifle growth in Kentucky's renewable industry, which already lags far behind many states.

"Only the costs are being looked at – none of the benefits – for going solar,” he points out. “And not just environmental costs, I'm talking about job creation."

Coxon notes his company employs iron and steel workers, electricians, crane operators and truck drivers, and does business with more than 100 vendors.

The solar movement managed to delay a vote on the bill in a Senate committee last week and is hoping it's dead for this legislative session.



get more stories like this via email

In a survey of young people who have experienced foster care, nearly 20% reported they ran out of food. (Maya Kruchancova/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Arkansans ages 16 to 26 who are or have been in the foster-care system now are eligible for one-time payments of at least $750…


Social Issues

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Jessica Molina of Perrysburg says she was inspired as a child by the spirit of activism, as she watched her parents participate in …

Environment

HARRISBURG, Pa. - U.S. Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., wants to bring back the Civilian Conservation Corps, a public-works program from the 1930s that created …


Nationwide, drug-overdose deaths increased by 30% between 2019 and 2020. (Andrey/Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

CHICAGO - Overdose deaths in Illinois rose by more than a quarter from 2019 to 2020, and medical experts are warning that pills not prescribed by a …

Health and Wellness

MINNEAPOLIS - As COVID cases trend upward again, public-health experts are setting the record straight on certain storylines about new infections…

A new report says the onset of the pandemic saw a drop of nearly 60% in children's visits to U.S. pediatricians. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

APPLETON, Wis. - The pandemic paused many facets of life, and a new report says wellness checkups for children were among them. With school resuming …

Environment

ALBANY, N.Y. - A ballot measure could give New York residents the constitutional right to a healthy environment, and on Tuesday a group of state …

Social Issues

SALEM, Ore. - Young people of color are locked up at disproportionately high rates compared with their white peers, despite recent signs the gap is …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021