New net metering rules could hurt renters


After months of debate, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) is on the brink of issuing yet another version of NEM 3.0, its rules governing net metering for residential solar installations. Despite all the public comments and rallies, one group of Californians has been largely overlooked: the millions of renters who stand to pay the price if the CPUC’s rules stifle the growth of rooftop solar.

The premise of net metering is simple. Customers who generate excess power from their rooftop solar systems are compensated for delivering that electricity to the grid for their neighbors to use. This policy benefits residents, schools, and businesses, by allowing them to save money on utility bills. And it helps the electric grid by making local power available to meet growing energy needs.

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