This week, Colorado regulators decided to preserve the state's successful net metering program, one of the most important policies for empowering families, schools and businesses to go solar. Commissioners saw through the barrage of misinformation and rhetoric from solar's opponents, calling the solar crediting program "satisfactory and balanced as is." We'll say.
Net metering gives Colorado solar customers full credit on their utility bills for the valuable power they produce for use nearby. It puts Coloradans in charge of their energy choices and utility costs like never before. It helps reduce the need for expensive, polluting power infrastructure, building healthier and more resilient communities. And it spurs growth in Colorado's new energy economy, supporting thousands of jobs and keeping energy dollars invested in our communities. Thanks to the Commission's leadership, Coloradans can count on continuing to get fair credit for a solar investment that benefits us all.
This major solar victory was nearly two years in the making. We were part of an incredibly diverse and powerful coalition of community, social justice, environmental and industry organizations all working together to make this win happen. Hundreds of Coloradans showed up to public workshops and rallies. Thousands more sent letters to the Commissioners and signed petitions. Through it all, Coloradans made it clear that you support solar power progress and a transition to clean, affordable renewable energy. Without those voices, this decision could have turned out very differently for the people of Colorado.
Through it all, the Commissioners showed their commitment to an open process that allowed those community stakeholders to have their voices heard on this important issue. Their commitment to the public interest was made even clearer in this week's decision, which puts Colorado energy consumers first.
Our partner Rosemary Harris Lytle, President of the NAACP CO-MT-WY State Conference helped put the win in the context of environmental justice and energy democracy: “Colorado has made good progress in cleaning up the state's electricity mix and putting people in control of their own energy choices. One of the most important state policies driving this clean progress is net metering. Today's decision is an important step for justice to protect this important clean energy program."
Sean Gallagher, Vice President of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) added, "We want to thank the Commission for holding this collaborative discussion on net metering, which allowed stakeholders the opportunity to present data on the costs and benefits of solar energy."
Let's make sure to tell the Commissioners how much we appreciate their leadership. If you live in Colorado, please take a few moments to email Commissioners Epel, Patton, and Vaad with your gratitude for preserving this critical solar policy.