Net metering allows solar system owners to reduce their bills by sending the excess electricity they generate, usually at periods of peak demand, to the grid. Their utility bills are credited at the average retail electricity rate.
And, as noted by Prometheus Institute for Sustainable Development Founder, President and Director Travis Bradford, “utilities are actually getting something of the highest value for an average price.”
But there is more to an electricity bill than that, explained Greentech Media Research Managing Director Shayle Kann as he was serving as moderator of a debate about net metering between Bradford and Westinghouse Solar CEO Barry Cinnamon at the GTM Phoenix solar summit.
A utility bill has a fixed component covering the transmission-distribution infrastructure, he said, and a charge for electricity generation. When solar system owners spin their meters backward at the full retail rate, they pay neither the generation component nor the transmission-distribution component, shifting those costs to “everybody else.”