"As States Slash Rooftop Solar Incentives, Puerto Rico Extends Them"

"A year after California gutted how much households are paid for excess solar power, Puerto Rico is preserving its net metering program to foster clean energy and resilience."

"As states across the country roll back how much they pay rooftop-solar owners for the surplus electricity they send back to the grid, Puerto Rico is bucking the trend, protecting its generous solar credits until at least the end of the decade.

California, Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, and North Carolina have all taken recent steps to change or get rid of these payments, which are known as net metering. But Governor Pedro Pierluisi signed a bill last month extending the U.S. territory’s program. The reason, advocates say, is that net metering is too essential to the archipelago’s clean energy goals, and the security of its people.

“It is our responsibility to promote the transformation of our electricity system and promote any initiative that aims to avoid: the excessive dependence on fossil fuels, environmental pollution, and increasing the effects of climate change,” the law states.

Net metering plays an important role in boosting solar’s popularity. Systems can cost between $10,000 and $20,000 on average, and even more when they include battery storage. The savings earned by selling excess energy offsets those costs, and helps the system pay for itself over time.

“It provides an incentive for people to go solar, and without it it’s just a lot more challenging financially,” Joseph Wyer, a policy analyst at the solar data firm Ohm Analytics, told Grist."

Gabriela Aoun Angueira reports for Grist February 6, 2024.

Source: Grist, 02/09/2024