Thanks to Gov. DeSantis, Florida still remains the Sunshine State. The Governor thankfully vetoed HB741/SB1024 that the legislature passed to ultimately eliminate solar power net metering in Florida.

What is net metering? Home owners who have installed solar power to generate their own electricity are entitled to income or credits on their power bill if they generate more power than they use. The excess power their solar power generates goes back into the electric grid system and is available for the utilities and others to use.

The legislation was a solution looking for a problem and would be a bonus for utilities and their shareholders. The bill would have, among other things, phase out net metering and make solar power less attractive for citizens thus weakening and possibly killing a newly developing solar power industry in Florida.

Only 1 percent of Florida citizens are currently using solar power for their homes and hardly a threat to utility companies. Considering we are the Sunshine State that is a pretty small percentage of power generation using the sun. It is unimaginable, in this day and age, that there are those who still want to turn the clock back on energy independence and penalize those who are trying to help themselves, the environment and even the utilities.

Since the mid-1970s, America has been talking about alternative forms of energy, including solar, that helps with: clean air, reduction in power demand during peak times, and allows utilities to avoid making costly expenditures on more power plants, not to mention the goal of becoming nationally energy independent. You would think these benefits alone would be a big motivator for utilities to promote solar power.

I am all for business development and success, so I urge the Florida utilities to get with the program and stop trying to put off the inevitable. We are inexorably moving to an alternate energy environment with wind, solar, hydrogen, biofuels and more. Thanks to the Governor, utilities can still get on board by doing all they can to promote solar and alternative power and make a business out of it. Considering the volatility in the world’s oil and gas market, let’s get on with it.

Again, thank you Gov. DeSantis!!

Al Pasini, MPA, CAE, served as Energy Director for the State of Missouri in the 1980s. He now provides management consulting for not-for-profit organizations.

Al Pasini, MPA, CAE, served as Energy Director for the State of Missouri in the 1980s. He now provides management consulting for not-for-profit organizations.

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