As the use of solar panels is increasing in New Hampshire, the landscape of solar incentives may be changing.
Right now residents and businesses that install solar panels can be eligible for various local, state and federal grants and tax credits. They are also eligible for “net metering,” in which utilities pay customers for any excess energy the customers generate with solar panels.
However, New Hampshire has a cap on net metering. Due to recent growth in solar panel installations, new solar customers may not be able to participate in net metering.
Rep. Frank Edelblut is trying to increase that cap this fall, when the legislature meets to vote on overriding Gov. Maggie Hassan’s vetoes. It will take a two-thirds vote of the legislature to raise the net metering cap during this special session.
“It seems silly to me to have production caps on a business we’re trying to get going,” Edelblut told the Concord Monitor. “I don’t think legislators want to go on the record all fall explaining to people why they can’t get solar.”
On the other hand, increasing net-metering can increase costs for customers without solar panels. Under net-metering, residential customers with solar panels don't have to pay "delivery charges" that fund the cost of poles, wires, and other electrical infrastructure. As a result, customers without solar panels end up footing that bill.
Some states have instituted new rates or surcharges for net metering customers to support electrical infrastructure.
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