Solar, net metering roil ‘old-time’ utilities
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For investor-owned Tucson Electric in Arizona, solar energy is a threat that calls for rate hikes and new monthly charges as high as $50 a month and slashing net metering payments for rooftop solar.
New charges will make sure everyone “pays their fair share” for maintaining the utility distribution system. Otherwise, the utility would have to raise rates, and hurt the poor who can’t afford solar. For the suits and their PR guys, solar’s just another yuppie ripoff.
Or is it?
At Con Edison in New York, they are singing a different tune. “Demand for solar is soaring … We will be ready for this change,” says Con Ed CEO John McAvoy. “We won’t just respond to change. We will lead.”