| Amendments Improve Net Metering Bill But Still Pose Grave Threat to Future of Rooftop Solar|
| This week we saw strong evidence that your advocacy is working in a small victory in our fight to mitigate the effects of the Renewable Energy Generation, SB 1024, filed by Sen. Bradley (R-Orange Park), who chairs the Senate Community Affairs Committee. The bill as originally filed would reduce the price that utilities pay rooftop solar owners for excess energy they sell back to the grid from a retail to a wholesale rate, drastically reducing the economic viability of rooftop solar.|
An amendment that passed this week included a step-down process to gradually decrease the rate at which energy companies pay solar owners until 2028, when customers would be paid at the reduced wholesale rate. The amendment also further extended the period of time existing rooftop solar owners can depend upon the current net metering rates from 10 to 20 years. These are steps in the right direction that will help rooftop solar owners; still, several remaining provisions in this bill continue to threaten the viability of rooftop solar in Florida.
Rooftop energy generation is less than 1% of Florida's current energy mix and Florida’s existing net metering structure was established to reduce barriers to private investment in the adoption of rooftop solar: making these changes to an industry still in its infancy is premature. Audubon feels strongly that the transparent and accountable Public Service Commission process that started in 2021 to evaluate rates and net metering should be allowed to run its course.
Rather than this bill’s regressive mandate, the PSC review could result in rate improvements that address utility concerns, protect consumers, and still provide financial incentives to drive the adoption of solar, battery, and efficiency tech. Solar—both utility-scale and rooftop—are essential to helping Florida meet the challenge of climate change.
Your voice is needed now more than ever. Thank you to all of our Audubon advocates who emailed the committee members ahead of this hearing! The bill is on the agenda in Rules next week.
Stay tuned for more updates from us. The House companion, HB 741 by Rep. McClure (R-Dover), has been referred to the State Administration and Technology Appropriations Subcommittee but is not on the agenda as of now.