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The following is an excerpt from an opinion piece written by Michigan EIBC President Laura Sherman for Crain’s Detroit Business.
Since the Michigan Legislature passed sweeping energy legislation in 2016, regulators have been developing a plan to change how customers who install solar panels at their homes are credited for the power they produce.
Utilities are now proposing replacements to the previous system of net metering. In May, DTE became the first utility to have its proposed replacement — the distributed generation (DG) program tariff — approved by regulators.
This tariff is causing many significant challenges for customers and solar installers as described in a story by Michigan’s National Public Radio affiliate, Michigan Radio, by two Michigan EIBC members — The Green Panel and Michigan Solar Solutions. The end of net metering has led to an outcry from customers who installed solar panels but can no longer understand how much they are saving on their bills, potential customers interested in putting solar on their roofs but intimidated by longer payback periods, and solar installers who are doing their best to try to assuage their frustrated customers.
But state lawmakers have introduced bills that will solve these issues. The Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council sees this legislation as a powerful step to get the state moving back in a direction toward a 21st-century grid that fairly accommodates two-way flows of electricity.
Read the details about how the legislation works in the full piece at Crain’s Detroit Business.