LADWP currently has a Feed-In Tariff program where it will buy power from solar (and wind/geothermal) installations at a competitive rate, but this program stops at installations smaller than 30 kW of capacity. That cuts out nearly all residential solar generators. For example, I maxed out my roof capacity for solar panels at 22 panels, and my capacity only hits 7.26 kW, so realistically only warehouses and big box stores can take advantage of this program.
Instead, LADWP offers net metering credits to residential solar generators, which is good but LADWP only offers credits - there is no option for LADWP customers to cash in their credits. That means that all of the power I generate in excess of my needs goes into a "net metering bank", and if I ever move away from LA, I forfeit those credits. For me, those credits are worth hundreds of dollars annually, and LADWP is getting a free ride off of my power generation because I opted to max out my capacity because it "seemed like the right, green thing to do."
LADWP is disincentivizing residential solar installations in this way. If solar generators could get cash back for their excess generation, residential installers would feel more confident maxing out installations, increasing economic activity in our community, accelerating the shift to green energy, lowering LADWP's electricity costs in the long run, and creating more economic opportunity for homeowners.
If you live in LA, call your local representatives and ask them why LADWP is discouraging solar installations in a way that hurts ratepayers and our local economy.
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