Businesses should love Massachusetts for its leadership in making renewable energy a major part of its energy mix but National Grid, on the other hand, may not. As of today, solar produces only 0.3% of Massachusetts’ electricity. Governor Deval Patrick has set a bold goal to have 1600 MW of solar installed by 2020. The solar bill in Massachusetts that is on Beacon Hill is intended to stimulate growth in the solar industry which would allow your business to become less dependent on the National Grid.
The clock is ticking and this Thursday the Legislature adjourns. Lobbying efforts from National Grid and other utilities are head-to-head with solar companies. At this time the spotlight is on the Chairman of the House and Ways Committee, Representative Brian Dempsey. Negotiations are being held but the outcome is uncertain for businesses that want to go solar. Let’s take a look at the major points in the bill. All of these are independent and could be altered if time does not run out.
1.) The targeted goal will be raised from 400 MW to 1600 MW which means that National Grid will have to “play nice” with your business if you want to go solar.
2.) The bill would remove net metering caps on the number of solar developments that could join the program which means your business can install as much solar as it wants further reducing dependence on National Grid.
3.) Virtual Net Metering is allowed which enables your business to sell the solar credits you do not use to other account holders in National Grid territory.
4.) Minimum utility bills would go into effect which cover the cost that National Grid needs to deliver the electricity. If your business was to offset 100% of its electricity consumption and it had a $0 bill the utility sets a minimum for the services they still have to perform since you would still be connected to the grid.
So what does all this mean for businesses wanting to go solar? It allows your organization to benefit from solar in the face of almost every obstacle. Finding a good site is sometimes difficult and creditworthiness can be a challenge as well. This bill allows businesses in Massachusetts to lower their electric bill and lock in savings for the future.
Here is an example: A company needs only 25% of its roof covered in solar to completely offset its electric bill. It can now install the other 75% of solar and sell that electricity to another account holder in National Grid territory that may not have enough roof space to offset its entire bill. Make sense? Don’t wait to see how much you can save by going solar! Get a solar quote here.