Eversource’s solar suppression

Published: 3/11/2019 8:50:56 AM
Eversource’s solar suppression

I was disappointed to see the Recorder’s laudatory and rather decontextualized appraisal of Eversource’s solar projects in this week’s Monday Shorts (“Advancing solar,” 2/25).

While you mention Eversource’s reputation for footdragging on many private solar projects (and, I would add, on many community solar projects as well), you appear to have accepted their corporate press release at face value and failed to connect the dots for readers who are unfamiliar with this issue.

It’s the distribution utilities (such as Eversource) that lobbied to have a piece of the action in building out the alternative-energy generation sector. It’s the distribution utilities that lobbied for low caps on the total solar production to be built. And it’s the distribution utilities that appear to be doing whatever they can to ensure that as much as possible of the reduced capacity, given these low caps, is composed of their own highly profitable projects.

Since these utilities are able to build their own projects with ease and hold up any other project pretty much at will, and at many points along the way, with no accountability mechanisms, we are left with the proverbial fox guarding the hen house.

Such was the case here in Sunderland: the town’s own relatively modest solar project was downsized and curtailed, after many delays, while Eversource’s own larger solar field in Sunderland (near Bub’sBar-B-Que on Route 116) sailed ahead without obstacle. Rather than superficial coverage of the solar build-out in Massachusetts, I’d like to see the Recorder do some deep digging that goes beyond the utilities’ self-congratulatory public relations.

I implore you to interview PV installers, developers, and array owners, large and small, and gather the facts and information that will expose this suppression and theft of the commonwealth’s solar power potential.

Aaron Falbel

Sunderland


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