Maine solar energy is saving cash and serving to struggle local weather change

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Fortunat Mueller is the co-founder and president of ReVision Power. Mike Choose is the vice chairman for coverage on the Coalition for Group Photo voltaic Entry. Each are members of Maine’s Distributed Era Stakeholder Working Group.

Think about two necessary info:

Maine-made solar energy is saving Mainers cash.

Maine-made solar energy is taking part in an necessary position in our struggle towards local weather change.

These info are driving the expansion of photo voltaic improvement in Maine. Our state decided to assist extra photo voltaic tasks get constructed and assist extra ratepayers profit from solar energy – that was a good move, and it’s working.

We’re sturdy supporters of our photo voltaic trade, and we consider that the proof is evident: the contribution that inflation-proof fuels like photo voltaic are making to our financial system and our surroundings is essential.

Due to Maine-based solar energy’s significance within the coming years, a current Bangor Each day Information article on photo voltaic in Maine is value analyzing extra intently. Frankly, the report was flawed and makes some sweeping and inaccurate claims concerning the perceived value of photo voltaic with out contemplating all its advantages.

The piece argues that photo voltaic packages are hurting ratepayers who don’t take part straight, a conclusion primarily based on a really slim examination of prices and advantages of a program that’s scheduled to sundown this 12 months. That is reflective of an lively marketing campaign of disinformation being unfold by opponents of photo voltaic and it doesn’t inform the entire story of the constructive affect our photo voltaic trade is having in Maine.

Final month, a report was submitted to the Legislature by the Distributed Era Stakeholder Working Group, a 15-member physique of state and native authorities representatives, shopper advocates, utilities, photo voltaic trade representatives, lecturers, and environmental advocates tasked with recommending a brand new coverage framework to advertise distributed photo voltaic. The group’s evaluation examined the financial affect of each present and potential future packages, discovering that for each greenback spent on photo voltaic below present packages, Maine sees $1.10 in advantages. Beneath the brand new program construction proposed by the Working Group, these advantages are projected to extend to $2.77 for each greenback spent when the photo voltaic is paired with power storage. This deployment of photo voltaic paired with power storage can be anticipated to scale back electrical charges for Maine residents and companies.

It’s vital that this paper’s readers are proven an entire image of the advantages of Maine’s photo voltaic coverage, together with decrease power costs that outcome from zero-cost photo voltaic era displacing costlier and risky fuels, the roles and financial improvement ensuing from the development and operation of photo voltaic amenities, the native tax income generated from photo voltaic amenities, the greenhouse fuel discount advantages of deploying native clear power, and the general public well being advantages of lowered air pollution from fossil gasoline era.

It’s plain that elevated use of photo voltaic is sweet for Maine’s atmosphere – but the Jan. 16 article doesn’t point out the phrase “local weather” as soon as. We consider that could be a vital omission when speaking about prices and advantages of Maine’s photo voltaic coverage.

And we must also think about that as we make a clear power transition there shall be new electrical energy demand coming on-line – warmth pumps and electrical autos, for instance – which would require extra sources of power. Maine-made photo voltaic era will play an necessary position in guaranteeing these pollution-free applied sciences may have the clear energy they want so we will meet our local weather objectives.

Maine’s photo voltaic packages and insurance policies, like all public insurance policies, actually may be improved as we be taught extra about the easiest way to design packages and easy methods to profit from alternatives created by the Inflation Discount Act just lately enacted by Congress and signed into legislation final summer time. In a world the place energy supply may very well be higher and cheaper, the photo voltaic trade is targeted on driving down prices and investing in our grid to enhance reliability and resilience.

Readers ought to know that photo voltaic advocates shall be working to implement a model of the brand new coverage framework proposed by the Distributed Era Stakeholder Working Group earlier this month that may enhance Maine’s profitable photo voltaic packages throughout the legislative session that simply started.

Maine-based photo voltaic is saving Mainers cash, preventing local weather change, offering jobs, rising native tax income, and serving to usher within the subsequent era of unpolluted electrical energy. There’s no query that our sturdy photo voltaic sector is having a broad, constructive affect from Fort Kent to Kittery.

Let’s be sure we proceed this momentum.