Green tea. I like that, I don't like everything about it, but I like it.
The granola and organic wine environmentalist have teamed up with the tea party and libertarians. The Green Tea Party, (actually a group of tea baggers now call themselves this) and people for clean energy found some common language that brought them together, and some in the GOP are rather shocked, and a bit worried.
Here's the language. Why can't we use the sunshine that falls on our house or property? Why must we buy from a monopoly when we could make our own energy? Let me tell the utility I want to buy solar, wind or coal fired energy. If I make extra energy why can't I sell it to the neighbor?
In Georgia together they fought the GOP controlled state energy board and legislation as well as the Kochs and allies and won. Georgia will probably mandate more solar and wind from utilities and you can choose the source, and with coal prices higher this year, people will opt for wind and solar. In Wisconsin they are beating back a set of rules on solar home installations. In Arizona the utilites and fossil fuel boys are crying about growing home solar systems, asking the state to change net metering, cutting the rate paid in order to discourage home solar units, the fight is on and it looks like the green tea party and the tree huggers are going to keep net metering at the current rate.
Now I do understand the problem for utilities if lots of customers produce their own power and only buy at night, or in small amounts. They have the power grid cost, cables to repair, tree trimming etc to pay for. I propose that if you install a large solar system and buy little from them, they be allowed to raise your monthly service charge. Call it an insurance policy for those black stormy days or if your PV hits a hickup, you will have access to the energy you need. This higher service charge for solar owners can pay for the grid infrastructure, while the solar owner still has a lot of independence and saves money overall. Sure, finding a fair price for this will be a cat fight, but what isn't.