The utility industry has launched what amounts to an all-out attack on net energy metering, under which customers receive credit for power they generate on-site and feed back into their utility’s distribution system.
In a report issued earlier this month, the Edison Foundation’s Institute for Electric Innovation (offshoots of EEI, the industry trade association) took aim at the net energy metering program in California, where roughly 120,000 customers (both residential and non-residential) are enrolled in the state’s NEM tariff, and found it, shall we say, lacking.
“The legitimate purpose of a subsidy is to provide an incentive to pursue a desirable public policy. Subsidies should not be overly generous; the amount of the subsidy should be transparent; and the recipient of the subsidy should be clearly identified. As our analysis demonstrates, the current NEM regulatory approach in California fails all three tests,” IEI concluded. The report, Net Energy Metering: Subsidy Issues and Regulatory Solutions, can be found here.