Solar energy supporters, utilities spar over Indiana legislation

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As more communities look to solar energy as a source of clean, renewable electricity, the funding announced today will help lower the cost of going solar and enable businesses to develop solutions for overcoming technical, regulatory, and financial challenges, further unleashing cost-competitive solar energy. As President Obama noted in his State of the Union address, the U.S. brings as much solar power online every three weeks as we did in all of 2008, said Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz. As the price of solar continues to drop, the Energy Department is committed to supporting a robust domestic solar manufacturing sector that will help American business meet growing demand and help American families and businesses save money by making solar a cheaper and more accessible source of clean electricity. Supporting Solar Technology Innovation and American Manufacturing The $45 million Technology to Market funding opportunity announced today is part of the Departments Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative, aimed at boosting American competitiveness and supporting a strong domestic, clean energy manufacturing sector. This funding opportunity combines three historically separate SunShot Initiative funding programs Incubator , Solar Manufacturing Technology , and Scaling Up Nascent PV at Home into one that will support projects with the potential to significantly reduce the costs for solar energy systems across a variety of technology areas. These tools, technologies and services could reduce the costs of technologies including photovoltaics and power electronics, and could also contribute to cutting balance of system and non-hardware costs through customer acquisition, permitting, financing, interconnection, and inspection. Empowering Communities to Deploy Solar The 15 Solar Market Pathways projects announced by the White House earlier today pursue various approaches to developing actionable solar deployment plans and strategies to promote deployment at residential, community, and commercial scalesfrom expanding shared or community solar programs and local financing mechanisms to integrating solar energy generation into communities emergency response plans. Aimed at cutting the non-hardware soft costs of solar such as permitting, financing, and connecting to the electric grid the case studies and lessons learned from these projects will ultimately provide similar jurisdictions with examples that can be replicatedan important step towards making solar deployment faster, easier, and cheaper across the country. The awardees include not-for-profits, utilities, industry associations, universities, and state and local jurisdictions in California, Illinois, Minnesota, New York, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin and Washington, D.C.
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Solar energy supporters, utilities spar over legislation – Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

The measure would amend Indiana’s so-called “net metering” law under which electric customers are charged only for the net amount of power they use and get credit on future bills for excess power they generate and send back into the electric grid. Power companies currently charge and credit such customers at the same rate per kilowatt hour. Republican state Rep. Eric Koch of Bedford says his bill’s purpose is “to promote and grow net metering.” However, Democratic Rep. Matt Pierce of Bloomington says the bill “would effectively end net metering” by reducing the credit solar panel owners would receive.
For the original version including any supplementary images or video, visit http://www.wndu.com/news/headlines/Solar-energy-supporters-utilities-spar-over-Indiana-legislation-289816611.html

The measure would amend Indiana’s so-called “net metering” law under which electric customers are charged only for the net amount of power they use and get credit on future bills for excess power they generate and send back into the electric grid. Power companies currently charge and credit such customers at the same rate per kilowatt hour. Republican state Rep. Eric Koch of Bedford says his bill’s purpose is “to promote and grow net metering.” However, Democratic Rep. Matt Pierce of Bloomington says the bill “would effectively end net metering” by reducing the credit solar panel owners would receive. (Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) WFIE
For the original version including any supplementary images or video, visit http://www.14news.com/story/27943401/solar-energy-supporters-utilities-spar-over-legislation