"Tariffs" Could Guaruntee Energy Costs

By: Jill Cordes
By: Jill Cordes

One reason more utility companies haven't made solar energy available to customers is price. But a new policy could make producing and buying solar power much more attractive.

Renewable energy payments, or "feed-in tariffs," guarantee an above-market price to anyone who produces solar energy and feeds it to the grid. That could be a utility, a business, even an individual homeowner with rooftop solar panels. The cost of those renewable energy payments is spread across all utility customers. A small price increase can mean a big incentive to install renewable energy systems. It's working.

This year, Gainesville Regional Utilities became the first in the us to introduce a renewable energy payment for solar power. It's sparked a surge in solar installations, benefiting the local economy. Four other states are considering implementing a similar policy.

These payments are just one way that policy can help change the way power is produced in America, shifting to clean, renewable energy sources.

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