A Red State Sides With Solar, Competition, no Taxes

slrSouth Carolina has become the 44th state to institute net metering. That’s the free market concept that requires utility monopolies to give rooftop solar customers full, fair credit for the excess energy they send back to the grid.

Rooftop solar and net metering have essentially introduced the free market concept to the electric utility market.

South Carolina made the right call. It made the conservative call.

People now have a choice, there is more competition, and solar customers maintain the right to use the power they generate on their roofs.

There are a number of utility monopolies fighting solar choice and net metering across the country. They have been lobbying for tax hikes, special fees, and surcharges all designed to undercut rooftop solar.

In some states, utilities have even come up with a plan that borders on socialism. In Minnesota, they support a Value of Solar Tariff (VOST) program. The program would force consumers to sell all of their homegrown power to the utility, and then get taxed on it. Leave it to a liberal state to screw up solar power and slow its growth.

South Carolina got it right.

And it was a smart move politically. In a recent South Carolina poll, 73% of respondents across political party lines said they want to see more solar growth.  A strong majority of South Carolinians (more than 75%) agree that rooftop solar is an important part of providing choice and competition in electricity.

This tale of two states offers a valuable lesson. When it comes to expanding solar, the conservative way gets the job done.

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