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Public Service Commissioner Lauren McDonald backs plans to charge Georgia Power customers an extra five cents each month so that more solar energy projects can be built.
McDonald, a Republican, calls for a study of renewable portfolio standards to increase Georgia’s solar energy development. The state would be required to produce a certain percentage of its electricity from renewable energy sources.
The requirements would not only create demand for more use of renewable energies but would also attract solar manufacturers to the state, according to Atlanta Business Chronicle.
“I’m just trying to stir the pot and get us looking outside the box,” McDonald said in an interview.” “That’s a position that three years ago, I would have said, ‘No’,” reports Bloomberg Businessweek.
There are already 24 states, plus the District of Columbia, that have renewable standard policies to adhere to.
Georgia Power, as well as PSC Commissioner Stan Wise, is not in favor of the proposed plan.
Spokeswoman for Georgia Power, Lynn Wallace, said in a written statement that the company is willing to increase use of solar power where affordable. She added “We believe in having a cost-effective, diversified portfolio of generation resources. We are opposed to a renewable portfolio standard due to the fact that it imposes mandates on types of generation without regard to economics.”
Wise just outright opposes the proposal, and does not seem to be wavering in his opinion.
Currently, Georgia is at a disadvantage compared to outlying states. Georgia has no laws forcing utilities or other firms to purchase renewable energy credits. McDonald thinks this has created uncertainty in the minds of investors, keeping them from providing money for solar energy projects.
Although McDonald is normally not in favor of imposing government mandates on utility companies, he is willing to acknowledge that his plan would impose mandates on companies and customers.
That’s all for now,