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Dominion debates solar penalty as Santee Cooper eyes broadband initiative

Dominion says the goal of the metering program to ensure that no one group is forced to...
Dominion says the goal of the metering program to ensure that no one group is forced to unfairly subsidize the cost of choices made by another segment of their customer base. (Source: Live 5)(WRDW)
Published: Feb. 24, 2021 at 2:29 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Dominion Energy says it is discussing an energy metering program that would would potentially make solar energy customer-generators pay more on their bills than before.

Dominion says the goal of the metering program to ensure that no one group is forced to unfairly subsidize the cost of choices made by another segment of their customer base.

The utility company says the approximately 11,000 Dominion Energy customers in South Carolina who use solar on their property also export a lot of it back to the grid. However they also says this means about 740,000 non-solar customers have to pay for maintaining power lines, generation stations and all other associated costs – while also paying for the more cost-efficient energy their utility is producing.

Dominion says it agrees with solar developers on the importance of solar growth in South Carolina, but it can’t forget about so many who are struggling financially.

While Dominion mentioned solar subsidies in their statement, they acknowledge that the law does not allow for the solar subsides to continue, and instead requires a commission to establish solar choice metering requirements.

In closing, Dominion reinforced their decision saying they must strike a balance between customers who choose solar, and those who don’t.

Also in the news ...

  • Santee Cooper’s board of directors says it approved draft rates and terms that could allow broadband providers to more quickly build out retail service to unserved areas of South Carolina. The utility provider says this is possible if it lets companies accessing Santee Cooper’s 1,200 miles of excess fiber, as well as their nearly statewide transmission infrastructure. Santee Cooper officials say they will host a virtual public informational session at 2 p.m. March 2. Organizers say participants can register by emailing broadband@santeecooper.com by 2 p.m. on March 1. Additionally the organizers say they will invite written questions and comments through March 10 at the same email address.

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