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HomeRenewablesSolar industry admonishes CPUC’s revised decision on community solar

Solar industry admonishes CPUC’s revised decision on community solar

The California Public Utilities Commission released a revised proposed decision on the state’s community solar program on May 28 after tabling a vote on the previous proposal multiple times. The CPUC is set to vote on the new PD this Thursday, May 30.

A diverse group of organizations, including the Coalition for Community Solar Access, The Utility Reform Network and the Coalition of California Utility Employees previously proposed a community solar program to the CPUC centered around a Net Value Billing Tariff (NVBT). This tariff program would have compensated subscribers to community solar projects up to 5 MWAC based on the value of a project’s generation at the time it’s provided to the grid. The commission did not move forward with that proposal.

The Coalition for Community Solar Access (CCSA) admonished the CPUC’s new proposed decision in a press statement:

“The revised proposed decision (PD) doubles down on supporting the broken proposal from the state’s utilities and would make California’s community solar program dead on arrival,” said Derek Chernow, Western Regional Director for CCSA. “It will not result in the development of new projects as envisioned by AB 2316 and will continue to leave California with no functional community solar program.

“The revised PD fundamentally misunderstands the value community solar can bring to California’s grid and the necessary role it can and needs to play in helping the state achieve its clean energy and equity objectives. It relies on one-time federal taxpayer money to subsidize an unworkable program instead of choosing a proven model that leverages private capital and risk to serve hundreds of thousands of income-qualified customers and small businesses.

“It also once again ignores the will of the California Legislature and the broad coalition of ratepayers, equity, environmental, labor and business groups who have demanded a functional community solar program.

“California should be seizing this once-in-a-generation opportunity to create a vibrant market. We urge the CPUC to slow down and take the additional time necessary to get this important decision right.”

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