PUC should protect rooftop solar
Re “Sky won’t fall if solar companies share a little sun” (Editorials, Jan. 25): The editorial urged the state to allow utilities to cut back on the credits that solar customers receive when they send energy back to the grid. The piece was dead wrong on the facts and misplaced in its priorities.
The editorial claimed the Public Utilities Commission has proposed making no changes to the “net metering” rules for solar customers when, in fact, the draft order would require a new upfront fee, an ongoing monthly fee and a requirement that solar customers use time-varying rates.
Now is not the time to disrupt the opportunity for consumers to generate clean power from the sunshine that hits their roofs. Solar creates jobs and is helping to address the disruption of our climate. The PUC ought to protect the ability of consumers to go solar and insist that utilities embrace the future rather than empowering them to squash the competition.
Bernadette Del Chiaro, Sacramento
Find a way to make rooftop solar work
I agree with most of The Sacramento Bee editorial board’s suggestion that the solar industry must seek an equitable position with the utility companies. If I was forced to buy my product at full retail price, I wouldn’t be in business long. The industry needs to find a way to allow the utility companies to buy the net power back at a wholesale price.
The comment “wealthier people remain the primary market for rooftop solar companies” is not correct; one only has to go to a big box home improvement store on a Saturday; everyone coming through the door is accosted by a solar company. Also, HUD has introduced a solar loan program for FHA buyers, to allow them to include the cost of a solar system into the home loan. This is the most affordable option for middle-income buyers.
Tom Caruthers, Roseville
Board would maim the solar goose
Really? The Sacramento Bee editorial board believes that massive multibillion-dollar California corporations (i.e. utilities) need protection? The utilities won’t be able to maintain their infrastructure without taking from low- and middle-income homeowners?
Get real. Our utilities have existed for decades without competition, yet are run by fat-cat executives who have compensation packages that are exponentially larger than most folks can even imagine.
Today, less than 5 percent of residential homes have solar power. Have you done the math on how much infrastructure can be maintained by those homeowners?
The editorial board is advocating one more way to maim the goose that laid the golden egg.
John DeKellis, Rocklin
Governor’s ‘pipes’ would harm Delta
Re “Brown lays out big plan in minimal speech” (Editorials, Jan. 22): The “slick” video mentioned in the editorial describes Gov. Jerry Brown’s twin pipes, which would carry water from Freeport to Tracy where the water is pumped up into the California Aqueduct. These “pumps kill fish and degrade the environment.”
The twin pipes would carry water across the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta by “natural” means – gravity – implying to the casual viewer that pumping would no longer be needed. The river already carries water to Tracy by “natural” gravity and the “fish killing and degrading” pumps will always be needed to raise the water 240 feet into the California Aqueduct.
Intake for the pumps would be at Freeport, where there is always fresh water, rather than Tracy, where the water can be salty in the dry season. Pumping could be continued, assuring Southern California users of water in the dry season, but at the expense of increased Delta salinity.
Clarence F. Kooi,
Parking makes downtown trip expensive
Our monthly ladies luncheon group met recently at a restaurant on K Street. We were in the restaurant and our parking fees were $12.25. Add this to an expensive lunch and we are better off eating in the suburbs. Guess I won’t even try to go to the new arena.
Joan Clark, Roseville
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