Kansas Solar gets Big Win – Sort of
Kansas residents and solar businesses have faced an uphill battle for solar access. For more than six years, the Climate + Energy Project has been fighting for fair policies for ratepayers and solar businesses at the Kansas Legislature and the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC). This spring, The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Solar Customers.
Although this was a major victory, there are several factors that need to be addressed. First of all, this ruling doesn’t automatically reverse the discriminatory charges. Instead, the new rate structure will be determined by the Commissioners at the KCC. A final order isn’t due until February 2021. This means that new and existing customers will continue to get charged the demand charge that the Kansas Supreme Court ruled is discriminatory. Secondly, as of now, customers who have been charged demand charges throughout the years will not be refunded for what has been established as an illegal charge.
In the meantime, CEP has filed to intervene in the demand charge case. Until these discriminatory charges have been reversed, Kansas is one of the only states in the Union that has this regressive policy. At the same time, Kansas is one of the top states with natural resources, meaning there is a tremendous opportunity for renewable energy potential that we are not using.
Lastly, thank you for taking action to stop the petition at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) that would have reversed net metering. FERC heard the petition this morning, and they unanimously voted to dismiss it! Our voices were heard!
The Supreme Court decision is a major milestone for solar fights. Because of your ongoing support, we have made the case for solar rights in the state house, the Governor’s Office, and now the Supreme Court. It is imperative that we continue to fight for solar rights so that Kansas can grow the solar economy, protect our environment, and position our state to lead the country in renewable energy growth!