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Long Island News

Changes To Net Metering Could Deter Large Solar Projects, LI Developers Warn

Solar Farm
Courtesy of Pixabay
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New York regulators have reworked their relationship with renewable energy developers. Solar power developers say the new requirements will hurt the growth of community solar farms on Long Island.

Solar farms use net metering. That accounts for any extra energy that’s added to the public electric grid. The developers get money from the state in return and are able to provide customers with savings.

But next year, New York will force developers to use the value of distributed energy resources. That means the state will provide subsidies based on when and where solar energy is added to the grid. 

Tara Bono, legislative liaison at Long Island Solar Energy Industry Association, says the policy will make it difficult to offer savings.

“Even though for a lot of people doing something for the environment is a great thing, a lot of times you really need that savings catalyst to encourage people to adopt community solar and renewable energy in general.”

Developers say this would be a problem for large-scale projects, like community solar farms that work with low-income residents and tenants who can’t install solar panels on their roofs.

There is an exemption in place for residential solar projects.