SEIA’s Efforts Continue Energy Freedom in South Carolina
Monday, Sep 21 2020
COLUMBIA, SC and WASHINGTON, D.C. — Over the past few years, SEIA has been deeply involved in energy choice and solar advocacy in South Carolina, helping to shape and secure the historic passage of the Energy Freedom Act (EFA) in 2019. SEIA continues to work through implementation of the EFA to ensure that the state follows through on its commitments, including development of net metering tariffs for rooftop solar.
SEIA’s witness contributed technical expertise and provided a critical foundation for the settlement.
Following is a comment from Sean Gallagher, vice president of state affairs at the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) on the South Carolina Public Service Commission’s efforts to create a net metering program for the state:
“SEIA continues to play a critical role in shaping what energy freedom looks like in South Carolina. Thanks to input from the solar industry and Duke Energy’s commitment to stakeholder engagement, the parties have reached a settlement on what net metering will look like in the Palmetto State.
“As a result of these discussions, the net metering regime for current solar customers has been extended through 2025 or 2029, depending on when customers switched to solar. At that the end of that period, these customers can continue with the current regime at 2025 or 2029 retail rates, or switch to the new program. Key elements of the new program include time-of-use rates and rebates for smart thermostats, both of which better align customer behavior with electricity system needs.
“The new program and rebate will equate to roughly the same benefits that current solar customers receive, while also promoting long-term stability for rooftop solar providers and customers, a foundational piece for incenting market growth.
“We commend Duke Energy for following an open and collaborative stakeholder process and implore other investor owned utilities in the region to follow their example. When utilities come to the table in good faith, we can achieve optimal outcomes for all parties involved and hope this settlement serves as an important lesson on aggressive collaboration in the Solar+ Decade.”
The Solar Energy Industries Association® (SEIA) is leading the transformation to a clean energy economy, creating the framework for solar to achieve 20% of U.S. electricity generation by 2030. SEIA works with its 1,000 member companies and other strategic partners to fight for policies that create jobs in every community and shape fair market rules that promote competition and the growth of reliable, low-cost solar power. Founded in 1974, SEIA is a national trade association building a comprehensive vision for the Solar+ Decade through research, education and advocacy. Visit SEIA online at www.seia.org.
Jen Bristol, SEIA's Director of Communications, firstname.lastname@example.org, (202) 556-2886