In the coming weeks, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) will announce its response to the Department of Energy’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR). As long as FERC decides to do something, it has to deal with a fundamental issue. The NOPR failed to answer the most critical question: just what is resilience? This question is not just a matter of semantics. Without a precise definition, FERC cannot determine whether the grid is sufficiently resilient, or gauge whether payments or other actions might be warranted.
New York, as a leader in energy policy, has embraced the Social Cost of Carbon in many recent landmark regulatory decisions. But now the state Public Service Commission is being wrongly attacked for using the SCC in its zero-emission credits (ZECs) program. If the Legislature halts this program, it would be a massive setback for climate change action in New York and around the country.
Rooftop solar electricity generation may seem like something that everyone can agree on. It helps homeowners save money on their electricity bills. It can help support the rest of the electrical grid during times of high usage or outages. It can help utilities meet their renewable energy mandates. And, if it replaces dirty fossil fuel power, it will reduce harmful air pollution, including carbon pollution that threatens to warm our climate and destroy our planet. However, utilities are concerned that increased development of rooftop solar generation will threaten their ability to maintain vital infrastructure, equitable rates for all ratepayers, and their own financial viability.
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