Over the past several months, three Vermont utilities have stopped allowing their customers to go solar, and a fourth has announced an impending slow-down.
That’s wrong. Every Vermonter should have the right to generate their own renewable power, be paid fairly for it, and help build a legacy of clean energy for Vermont.
Governor Shumlin has long been a strong supporter of solar, and it’s going to take continued leadership from him to ensure all Vermonters again have the right to go renewable.
We’ve made it our mission here at VPIRG to make moving to clean energy easier and more affordable for all Vermonters. Nowhere have we, or has Vermont, had more success in that than on solar power.
Vermont is 9th per capita in the nation in installed solar power. That’s no accident – we’ve worked hard to make Vermont’s net metering law one of the strongest in the nation, and solar has begun to take off as a result.
Net metering is the program that lets Vermonters go renewable (usually solar), and offset their electric bills in return. Unfortunately, some of Vermont’s electric utilities have made clear they want to make it more expensive for Vermonters to go solar. We know they’ll be pushing in the legislature to make that happen.
Governor Shumlin and his staff will play a huge role in determining if we continue to make going solar easier and more affordable, or if we let Vermont Electric Coop and other utilities drive the price of going solar up, and the number of Vermonters going solar down.
We’ll be working hard between now and the legislative session to make sure Vermont’s legislators and other leaders know Vermonters understand we need to move faster towards solar, not slower.