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Solar Industry Responds to Arizona Public Service Filing on Net Energy Metering

WASHINGTON, DC – Reacting to Arizona Public Service’s (APS’) recommendations to the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) on net energy metering, Carrie Cullen Hitt, senior vice president of state affairs for the Solar Energy Industries Association, released the following statement:

“Today’s filing from APS comes at the conclusion of a long and challenging stakeholder process in which SEIA has been heavily engaged. While we have voiced some serious concerns throughout this process related to the transparency of APS’ decision-making process and its method for determining the value of net energy metering for all its ratepayers, we remain committed to working with both APS and the ACC to arrive at a conclusion that preserves full retail credit net metering while achieving ratepayer fairness.

“Solar energy offers tremendous benefits to all Arizona electricity customers, including those who aren’t yet solar users. Clean solar power reduces air pollution, cuts distribution and transmission costs incurred by utilities, and creates jobs and economic growth opportunities. In 2012 alone, $590 million was invested in Arizona to install solar on homes and businesses.

“Arizona has just begun to scratch the surface of its solar potential. It’s essential that we keep smart policies like net metering in place so that Arizona can continue to benefit from its abundant solar resources, potentially spurring thousands of distributed generation and large-scale solar energy projects in the years ahead. SEIA maintains our steadfast commitment to seeking a fair conclusion to these proceedings that adequately preserves free market access to net-metered solar energy systems for the state’s electricity customers – both today and in the years to come.

“We trust that the ACC will take into account the full value proposition that the Arizona solar energy industry offers both the state’s economy and its electricity customers, and the commission will take appropriate action to preserve the future of this growth industry.”

Net metering is a popular consumer policy in place in 43 states that empowers homes, businesses, schools, and public agencies to install solar while helping the economy and other ratepayers. As a result of thousands of Arizonans’ choice to adopt rooftop solar, a competitive solar energy industry employs 9,800 Arizonans today.  Arizona boasts the most solar per capita of any state in the nation with 1,146 megawatts (MW) of solar capacity. Beyond making a smart energy choice, a recent study commissioned by SEIA shows that these customers’ investments provide $34 million in financial benefits per year to all APS customers. Overall, Arizona ranks 2nd in the country for most installed solar, with enough capacity to power more than 145,500 homes.

About SEIA®:
Established in 1974, the Solar Energy Industries Association® is the national trade association of the U.S. solar energy industry. Through advocacy and education, SEIA and its 1,000 member companies are building a strong solar industry to power America. As the voice of the industry, SEIA works to make solar a mainstream and significant energy source by expanding markets, removing market barriers, strengthening the industry and educating the public on the benefits of solar energy. www.seia.org

Background Materials:
- “New Study: Distributed solar energy provides $34 million in benefits to Arizona ratepayers,” May 10, 2013: http://www.seia.org/news/new-study-distributed-solar-energy-provides-34-million-benefits-arizona-ratepayers
- The Costs and Benefits of Solar Distributed Generation for Arizona Public Service, May 10, 2013: http://www.seia.org/research-resources/benefits-costs-solar-distributed-generation-arizona-public-service
- More from SEIA about the Arizona solar industry: http://www.seia.org/state-solar-policy/arizona
- U.S. Solar Market Insight: First Quarter 2013: www.seia.org/smi

Media Contacts:
Jamie Nolan, jnolan@seia.org, 202.556.2886

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