New Report Confirms Benefit of Design Change for Utility Charges


In a report commissioned by The Alliance for Solar Choice, Crossborder, a third-party consultant, voiced concerns about the new push from Arizona Public Services to change the way utility companies charge. But, while TASC hoped that this would mean sticking with net metering, what Crossborder found instead was an agreement with APS’ recent study conducted by Navigant. Both concluded that there is both room and need for change in the way that customers are charged for their utilities to make prices fairer in a world where solar subsidies exist.

APS has been a major voice of support for the Tucson-based utility company, UNS, during their proposal to change from net metering to a demand charges system. This would stop high-income solar customers from selling back unused energy at retail prices and help low-income customers pay a lower average payment per month. The outcome of UNS’ case is expected to follow through the state.

TASC’s report was expected to strike a blow against UNS’ case, but it has instead only served to boost support as Crossborder has shown agreement between the two sides. APS’ goal is for a push toward fair energy costs for all its users and better technology in renewable energy sources. This, it seems, can be reached if TASC agrees to push for better technology instead of higher prices based on the incentive of unfair subsidies for solar users.

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