Thank you for your recent editorial making the case for more renewable energy in West Virginia. (WV needs to pursue renewable energy, Feb. 4). It couldn’t have come at a better time. Legislators are considering a bill, Senate Bill 611, that would legalize a financing mechanism known as on-site Power Purchase Agreements (PPA).
An on-site PPA allows a property owner to host an energy-generating system on their building or land. The system owner is responsible for installing and maintaining the system. The owner sells the electricity the system generates back to the host. These hosts could be a homeowner, small business, church or other non-profit.
Making on-site PPAs legal would allow West Virginians to access affordable renewable energy such as solar with zero upfront cost. This will lower their electric bills from day one. It helps them avoid utility rate hikes and stabilize their monthly budgets. These reasons may be why our state’s monopoly electric utilities are opposing SB 611.
These benefits extend beyond PPA participants. A recent study (available at EnergyFreedomWV.org) found legalizing PPAs would create hundreds of new jobs in our state in the emerging solar industry. Companies with mandates to use renewable energy could finally consider our state as a good place to do business.
Best of all, making on-site PPAs legal won’t raise taxes or our utility bills.
WV Citizen Action Group