Solar Energy

Solar Energy

Supporters of solar energy want the P. E. I. government to do more to increase the amount of electricity generated by the sun on Prince Edward Island consultants have drafted a new energy strategy for P. E. I.

and they’ve taken it to for public consultation sessions across the province but this strategy does not include any incentives for islanders who want to invest in solar power systems advocates of renewable energy have appeared at the sessions making the case for more government support for solar in just a few moments.

What is Solar Energy

we’ll hear from Kim herself from the P. E. I. energy corporation but first island mornings Nancy Russell spoke with Steve Howard he’s the president of renewable lifestyles in Summerside his company sells solar systems and he’s been leading a public campaign to get more islanders out to the public consultations to voice their support for solar in the report the consultants say that solar power doesn’t need incentives that lots of islanders are already getting solar power and it pays back within 10 years what do you think about arguments.

it’s a strange argument because I’ve heard the opposite coming from it a different government. The office recently it’s been too expensive so not good incentives now it’s 2 jeeps or not can incentive the bottom line is it’s what islanders want so it should be incentive so let’s see some incentives coming to create an industry what would you like to see in terms of incentives well.

How Solar Energy Works

we used to have an incentive for renewable energy straight across the board here with no HST or sorry PST on any renewable energy equipment with the implementation of the HST that kind of one of the doors for your residential homeowner’s businesses can still recover the HST but homeowners can’t so I mean why not bring back at least what used to be there before the introduction of the HST I would like to see at least a full compensation for any overproduction for like if a homeowner right now puts in more than they use in a year into the grid.

they don’t get any compensation for that overproduction is just taken from them so I would like to see a full compensation of that at that retail rate because I’ve done some number crunching and it makes sense it’s a net benefit to the grid so why not encourage more of it so right now if a homeowner has extra electricity from their solar power what happens to it.

It goes to build up credit on the Solar Energy grid and later when you need it to say the wintertime after a summer of production you can pull that power back from the Solar Energy grid but if you don’t need all the power that you’ve stored in there eventually you will lose that all those credits and there’s no compensation whatsoever for those last credits so you’d like them to get money for that.

Solar Energy

yes I mean in Nova Scotia they have enhanced net metering where that exact thing happens whenever the account is reset there’s a full retail credit that’s applied to that it’s its way to 0 and the checks into it as compensation.

So you’d like to see compensation for the power going into the Solar Energy grid and then also the rebate of the HST correct. What kind of response has there been in the public meetings you’ve been encouraging people to come out and talk about solar what kind of response has there been well.

I only started then after I was able to the Summerside meeting and I had seen that the draft commute without any change whatsoever just a recommendation to carry on as we were already and as we were was it took 3 years to install point 1 percent of agreed in the energy we use now comes from solar so took 3 years to do that so we just carry on at that rate.

we’re not going to get very far towards our goals of 100 percent renewable energy by 2050 so it just seems to me after 1 of the public meeting that there were other people at that public meeting asking the same questions or similar questions to me and I just thought this is a message that has to get a dial understood that they have this opportunity right now because from what I understand the ears are open for the consultants and the P. E. I. energy corporation to say it is it’s not finalized yet let’s change but it’s up to islanders to step up and say what they want right now thank you very much thank you.

I’m Kim her out with the Prince Edward Island energy corporation that draft strategy was positive on solar thinks it’s up to you guys doing really great things for solar right now and they’re encouraging it to continue but they think it’s a viable industry on its own right now with delta so they’re not recommending incentives at this point and they’re saying for utility solar that we should really watch it.

see if it gets to a price where it’s more economical and then be ready to move why specifically to the consultants not recommend incentives we have 70 installations on P. E. I. right now and when you get when you haven’t centers we’re scared that the uptake will be too much all at once and we will be ready for that and when that happens.

Solar Energy Cost

it’s happened in other jurisdictions where the nonsolar customers end up paying a premium for the solar customers on the Solar Energy grid so it’s just we just want to be prepared for it and ready for when it does get to that point so one of the things that some of the people I’ve been talking to have been looking for our incentives receiving money back for excess energy that they send into the Solar Energy grid could not be considered it’s all being considered right now.

absolutely we’ve heard all the input from people and the consultants are taking all that input they’re doing the higher-level evaluation of it and they’re going to come back in and see if it’s viable and what the best recommendations are but it’s all being considered another suggestion was receiving the H. S. T. as a rebate when you invest in a solar system similar to what had been offered with the P. S. T. before is that a possibility again.

we’re looking we are looking at everything that’s been recommended and you know these are policies discussions that’ll take place after even after the strategies developed what happens now with the strategy we’re taking still taking public input till June 10 and then after that the consultants will be our continuing.

And to work on the draft copy so a second draft of the strategy will be available on June 20 and that will be open to the public to read until the 20 ninths where we will have another public meeting in Charlottetown we’re hoping to get the word out that that there is a public meeting on the 20 ninths.

we get lots of interest in attendance and then there what that will be open for more public for another week or so and so then we’ll be looking at the final strategy sometime towards the end of July and the second draft this is something specific that people have been asking for the public meetings is that correct that’s correct people wanted more input so they wanted to be able to review what the second draft was saying and provide more input.

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