Solar energy stakeholders outline best rate design practices

Published on July 26, 2016 by Jessica Limardo

In an effort to protect future generations of ratepayers, a group of solar energy leaders released a paper on Thursday titled “Rate Design for a Distributed Grid” that outlines best rate design practices for the new era of energy.

“Time and again, state public utility commissions and other researchers have found that the benefits of distributed solar equal or exceed the costs to electric ratepayers,” Vice President of State Affairs at SEIA Sean Gallagher said. “Rather than using rates to slow down the solar revolution, utilities and regulators can help bring about a sustainable distributed energy future that takes advantage of the services that solar systems can provide to the grid.”

The leaders recommended a variety of practices to ensure that rate design for the distributed grid is fair to all, including studying the cost-benefit analysis of distributed energy, using customer-sourced energy to meet infrastructure needs, and improving updated technology to make distributed energy safe and reliable.

The paper was a collaborative effort by CalSEIA, TechNet, Sierra Club, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), SolarCity and the Alliance for Solar Choice. It was released in response to the primer rate design recently released by the Edison Electric Institute.