Arizona has more solar installed per capita than any other state in the nation. But now utilities are working behind the scenes to block Arizonans’ right to go solar and reduce their power bills. Arizona’s utilities are attacking rooftop solar by going after the state’s successful net metering policy. Net metering makes sure that people who invest in solar receive fair credit from the utility for the power they send back to the grid. Utilities don’t like it because it reduces their profits.
In a victory of David vs Goliath proportions, Arizona policymakers stood up for its citizens by rejecting an attempt from the state’s largest utility to squash rooftop solar in November 2013. Five months after Arizona Public Service (APS) sought approval to slap hefty new fees of $50-$100 per month on its customers that go solar, the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) voted to uphold Arizona solar savings and energy choice. Despite millions of dollars on spent on a misleading campaign by the utility and its proxies, public outcry against the utility proposal was overwhelming. While the vote was clearly a win for Arizonans, the ACC’s approval of a small but troubling new fee makes it clear that there is a significant amount of education left to be done regarding distributed solar’s tremendous value. Learn more about that solar victory here.
By bringing clean energy closer to where it’s actually used, net metering benefits all Arizona energy users: $34 million in money-saving grid benefits for APS customers alone. Rooftop solar also means energy self-reliance for Arizona, cleaner air, local jobs, and finally, some much needed competition for the monopoly utilities. We strongly disagree with the Commissioners decision to assess a fee – even a small one – on net metered customers, and we are continuing to educate all stakeholders and decisionmakers to dispel the myth that solar is a cost to non-solar ratepayers once and for all.
Fact Sheet: Stop the Utility Power Grab (Source: Vote Solar)
Editorial: Don’t Dim Solar’s Bright Future (Source: Arizona Republic)
Latest News: APS Admits to Funding Anti-Solar Ads (Source: CBS5)