Connecticut is on the verge of changing one of the key financial underpinnings for residential solar electric systems.
Elaborate plans for an ambitious one-off state incarnation of a green new deal were substantially scaled back when the legislation came to the House floor on Tuesday.
The solar compensation policy that nearly derailed major energy legislation last session is back for a new go-round this session.
Updated at 6:25 p.m.
After a near-death experience, energy legislation that will fundamentally change how renewable energy is valued financially in Connecticut passed the state House early Wednesday morning and is now headed to the governor for his expected signature. The legislature also completed action on an environmental bill.
With the Energy and Technology Committee’s approval deadline for bills this session on Thursday, committee leaders, the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, the governor’s office and environmental advocates are racing the clock on one of the most consequential energy bills in years. Solar policy could stop them — again.
The final version of Connecticut’s new energy strategy and the bills that would implement it are before the legislature. So is a controversy that has dogged the plan since it was first released – solar policy.
Provisions in the Connecticut Comprehensive Energy Strategy that would drastically limit the number of solar systems people and businesses can put on their roofs and could change the payment structure for excess electricity those systems generate have riled the state’s solar industry and those who support it.
Connecticut’s shared solar pilot program has already missed its first deadline and faces even more delays. In the meantime, arguments over how to pay for clean energy are bubbling up again.
For the second year in a row, legislation to allow shared-solar installations to be built in Connecticut is facing a rough road. While some want to go slowly with only a couple of pilot projects, others want to plunge right in based on the models and success shared solar is having around the country. The goal for advocates is to avoid last year’s result, which was nothing.