Solar industry will work with Congress to clarify state feed-in tariff authority
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) President and CEO Rhone Resch today released the following statement on yesterday’s decision by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) that preempts the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC) feed-in tariff for combined heat and power generating facilities of 20 megawatts (MW) or less.
“The Commission’s order will make it considerably more difficult for states to implement feed-in tariffs, an increasingly popular policy used by states to promote solar deployment. Typically, a feed–in tariff requires utilities to purchase renewable power at a set price through long-term contracts. This policy has been widely used in Europe and is a very effective means of encouraging the development and production of renewable energy because of the financial certainty it provides.
“Many States, including California, are taking the steps necessary to decrease our use of polluting energy sources and these efforts should not be frustrated by federal regulation. We will continue to work with Congress to clarify that states have the authority to establish a feed-in tariff to help deploy more clean, safe solar energy.
“We are pleased that the comprehensive climate and energy bill passed by the House last year, H.R.2454, includes a provision authored by Representatives Kathy Castor (D-11th FL) and Jay Inslee (D-1st WA) that assures state authority to implement feed-in tariffs. We are working with the Senate to include such a provision in S.1462, the Senate energy bill. We also encourage FERC to reconsider its ruling should an appropriate and timely request for rehearing be filed with the Commission.”