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September 22nd, 2018
By Shelley Robbins
After the Legislature failed to pass legislation dealing with the impending cap on 1:1 net metering, Duke Energy Carolinas reached the limit prescribed in Act 236, passed in 2014. On August 1, DEC ceased offering the program and put in place a “buy all, sell all” tariff that essentially shut residential rooftop solar down in the Upstate.
For more information about net metering and what the new tariff could mean for homeowners, read this recent blog post.
Upstate Forever is part of a diverse stakeholder group that includes the investor-owned utilities, our conservation partners, the Southern Environmental Law Center, solar developers, AARP, and others being convened by the Office of Regulatory Staff to work on both short-term and long-term solutions.
On September 5, a negotiated compromise between many of the parties, including Upstate Forever, enabled DEC to file for an extension of the net metering program through March 15, 2019. Parties have requested expedited treatment and on September 19, the Public Service Commission unanimously approved the program.
This will be a very temporary band-aid that hopefully will save some of the Upstate solar jobs that were created by a robust residential rooftop solar industry.
We continue to work with this stakeholder group on a long-term solution that allows for additional growth in customer-sited distributed energy (DER), and without question, the Legislature will need to take action on this issue in 2019. Customer-sited DER employs thousands across South Carolina and contributes increasingly to our resilience while reducing peak loads on our power plants.
Please join our Legislative Update email list to receive updates and ways to take action on this issue in the coming months.
For more information, contact Shelley Robbins, Energy & State Policy Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org