More states prioritized energy equity in solar rate design in Q2 2023


Community Solar Project by New Energy Equity.

The NC Clean Energy Technology Center (NCCETC) has released its Q2 2023 edition The 50 states of the sun. The quarterly series provides insight into state regulatory and legislative discussions and actions on distributed solar policy, focusing on net metering, distributed solar valuation, community solar, residential fixed charges, residential demand and solar charges, third-party ownership, and utilities. rooftop solar projects.

The report finds that 40 states, plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, took action on distributed solar policies during Q2 2023 (see figure below), with the largest number of actions continuing to focus on net metering policies (57). Community solar policies (48) and residential fixed fee or minimum bill increases (44). A total of 176 distributed solar policy actions were implemented in Q2 2023, with the most in California, New Mexico, Connecticut, Maryland, Missouri, New York, Arkansas, Hawaii, Maine, New Hampshire, and North Carolina.

in 2023 Q2 policy action on net metering, rate design, and solar ownership

Map of the 50 states of Solar Q2

The report identifies three trends in solar policy activity in Q2 2023: (1) addressing equity issues through distributed solar programs and rate design, (2) developing new iterations of their community solar programs, and (3) changing the treatment of monthly net surplus. generation from customer-generators.

“This has been an active period for Maryland. lawmakers have passed several bills that change net energy metering and community solar programs in the state,” said NCCETC Policy Analyst Vincent Potter. “Maryland’s new laws allow customers to waive annual payments and accumulate their excess production credits indefinitely. The same law allows community solar customers to collect credits in the same way as grid metering customers. Another law made permanent the state’s community solar pilot program, with some provisions for multiple facilities to be sited close together under specific land-use or subscription scenarios and reserving 40% of energy output for low-income customers.”

The report identifies five key distributed solar policy actions for Q2 2023:

  • Maryland lawmakers pass permanent community solar program legislation.
  • California utilities that offer income-graded residential flat rates;
  • Idaho Power Unveils Net Metering Successor Rate Proposal;
  • Minnesota lawmakers reform state’s community solar program. and:
  • Rhode Island lawmakers review grid metering and community solar rules.

“States are taking a strong interest in energy equity,” said Brian Lipps, NCCETC’s senior policy program manager. “While policymakers continue to view community solar as an opportunity for access and affordability for low-income customers, policymakers are considering new experimental approaches, including the tiered fixed-income fees proposed in California.”

News from the NC Clean Energy Technology Center

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