06 Sep '12, 12pm

Utilities beat back community solar bill in California

Utilities beat back community solar bill in California

One of the big pieces of a future that makes sense is an energy system that involves clean power, less waste, more intelligence, and a wider distribution of economic benefits. (Think locally owned solar panels hooked into a smart grid.) I lump all that under the term “distributed energy” and have been making fitful efforts to track some of the battles going on around it. The latest episode is a sad one. Last year in California, state Sen. Lois Wolk (D) set out to tackle a pretty simple problem: Access to distributed energy (mostly rooftop solar panels) is restricted to those who can afford it and own a suitable roof. About 75 percent of Californians don’t fall into that category — they either rent, don’t have the equity, or have a shaded or wrong-facing roof. That’s a huge market to be tapped. So she put forward Senate Bill 843 , which would allow customers in the service ...

Full article: http://grist.org/climate-energy/utilities-beat-back-commu...

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