Case Study: Net Metering in Arizona

The California Renewable Energy Experience
July 15, 2013
PACE in WSJ: Learn from Carbon Mistakes
September 18, 2013
In a special case study, PACE looks at net metering in Arizona. The state, which has one of the most robust residential solar energy markets in the U.S., is currently deciding the best way to compensate solar energy customers while not unfairly shifting cost burdens to non-solar customers. 

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“Arizona has an opportunity to set an important precedent for the treatment of residential distributed generation, particularly in showing other markets the smart and sustainable way to compensate solar customers for their electrical generation,” PACE explains. “The state has a utility, APS, that is committed to the growth of solar power on its system and that has a customer base that has invested significantly in the technology.”

As part of its look at the consequences of residential solar customers, PACE cites case studies from Hawaii and California, where the rapid deployment of solar rooftops created inequities for other customers. Some customers in Hawaii were forced to pay $10 more per month due to net metering practices, while state policy in California will cause non-solar customers to pay an additional $1.3 billion. Arizona, PACE explains, has an opportunity to avoid such situations by creating a fair and equitable plan for net metering.

PACE believes strongly that, as more solar power comes online, regulators have an obligation to  protect customers against inequities in electricity rates by ensuring that the fixed costs of maintaining the electricity grid are distributed fairly.