A new proposal before the state house and senate threaten to derail climate action plans across Massachusetts. The new policy affects the State’s robust net-metering program, which allows residents who invest in solar the opportunity to sell excess power back to the operating utility that serves their region. Net metering offers an important incentive for households who are considering what can often be a large initial investment. The ability for families to sell unused electricity provides a monetary incentive for cutting power use and investing in rooftop solar.
Net metering is important to cities and communities. By facilitating the transition to decentralized, clean energy—cities depend less on large utilities, which often generate power by burning dirty fossil fuels. The freedom to produce ones own energy, the shift to clean power, and the ability to cut spending on utilities all contribute to better and cleaner communities.
Community leaders in Massachusetts are working to improve the lives and climate in their city. Find out how you can do the same by joining Path to Positive Communities.
Massachusetts mayors warn of proposed change in solar bill
Caledonian Record | March 14, 2016
BOSTON (AP) — Dozens of Massachusetts mayors and town managers are warning that a proposed change in a key solar power bill could jeopardize planned municipal solar projects across the state.
A six-member House and Senate committee is trying to hammer out a compromise version of the bill.
It proposes changing the state's "net metering" program that allows electric customers and municipalities to sell excess solar power they generate back to the grid for credit.
Electric companies currently pay a retail rate for the energy. A proposed change would let them pay a much lower wholesale rate.
Democratic Newton Mayor Setti Warren says the change could wipe out most of the $4 million the city hopes to save over 20 years by leasing 13 municipal sites to a solar developer.
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