The Right Wing War on Solar

April 22, 2014

I’ve said it before. As solar energy overtakes just about every other competitor, state by state, look for claims about “solar cell syndrome”, and “lowered property values”.  It’s a template.

Bill may raise utility fees

Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin signed a bill Monday that would allow regulated electric utilities to establish a new customer class for users of rooftop solar panels or small wind turbines.

In signing Senate Bill 1456, Fallin also took the rare step of issuing an executive order directing its implementation.

SB 1456 would allow electric utilities to apply to the Oklahoma Corporation Commission to establish a higher base customer charge for users of rooftop solar or small wind turbines. The higher fixed charge would be used to recover some of the infrastructure costs to safely send excess electricity back to the grid.

Fallin’s executive order emphasized the importance of renewable energy in her Oklahoma First Energy Plan, which was released in 2011.

“A proper and required examination of these and other rate reforms will ensure that Oklahoma appropriately implements the Oklahoma First Energy Plan while protecting future distributed generation customers,” Fallin wrote in the executive order.

SB 1456 drew opposition from solar advocates, environmentalists and some conservative groups opposed to what they saw as an unnecessary roadblock to solar development by regulated utilities. The bill goes into effect Nov. 1, and any new tariffs covering distributed generation users would have to be finalized before the end of 2015

13 Responses to “The Right Wing War on Solar”

  1. […] Koch Brothers seem to have declared war on solar power. Even the New York Times opined against […]

  2. “I’ve said it before. As solar energy overtakes just about every other competitor, state by state, look for claims about “solar cell syndrome”, and “lowered property values”. It’s a template.”

    In the context of calling wind turbine syndrome “bullshit” in previous posts, that statement shows how deluded this blog is. You can’t compare low-lying solar panels to gigantic, noisy wind turbines in terms of environmental impact. Do you really think there’s a unified conspiracy to criticize all forms of renewable energy?

    Rooftop solar panels make no noise and don’t destroy scenic vistas unless you include urban housing sprawl as part of it. If Elon Musk’s new solar tiles take hold (announced in Oct. 2016) they won’t even be noticeable as a power source. I consider that a great development if it brings more acceptance of solar.

    Of course, some detractors will always be shills from other industries, but most are just tired of scenery carnage passed off as clean, green and beautiful. If you can’t see contextual motives, you’ve lost objectivity.

    The main environmental complaint about solar power involves mirrors or PV arrays sprawling across the desert or taking over vital farmland. Other than that, solar is much greener than wind turbines, which require too many rationalizations.

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