Santee Cooper holding solar power customers hostage!
This utility company has came up with their own sneaky plan to keep customers from buying and installing solar by offering “net-billing”, which is their own version of net-metering that totally favors the utility company. The interesting part is when you visit the Santee Cooper website they show off they “Live Green” and brag about their solar power initiatives, but it’s just plain and simple Greenwashing.
According to SourceWatch Greenwashing is defined as the following, “the unjustified appropriation of environmental virtue by a company, an industry, a government, a politician or even a non-government organization to create a pro-environmental image, sell a product or a policy, or to try and rehabilitate their standing with the public and decision makers after being embroiled in controversy.”
The defintion of Greenwashing perfectly fits what Santee Cooper is doing with by not offering net-metering like the rest of the country and offering a “net-billing” which really does no encorage customers to install solar panels. The South Carolina Net Metering Blog does a good job describing net billing offering by Santee Cooper.
- Net-Billing is a pilot program in which only 10 people can participate.
- Once you install a solar power system and particpate in the program you have to change your rate to time of use.
- Since its a pilot program, there can be dramatic shifts in policy which could leave the solar power system owner holding the bags.
- Santee Cooper’s board of directors can change the program at their will.
- The CEO of the company thinks they are being generous compared to other utilites.
We here in California have very generous utility companies (even though they are not perfect) Our state has the most solar power installations compared to anywhere else in the USA. So this message goes out to Santee Cooper, get your act together, offer real net-metering and stop playing games with your customers, we have no time to play these types of games and discorage the use of solar power, the renewable energy revolution is going to happen with or without Santee Cooper.
Santee Cooper customers, if you are dealing with the utility to install solar power on your home or business and are having trouble with Santee Cooper and their lame Net-Billing policy, there is help! SEPA (Solar Electric Power Association) that faciliates the relationship between utility companies and customers who want to go solar.