California’s sun power for all program sabotaged by profit-driven companies.

By Oliver Townsend Jun 29, 2024
California’s community solar program undermined by for-profit....jpegOrginal image from:

California’s community solar program has faced setbacks due to the profit-driven interests of utility companies, hindering the state’s renewable energy transition. Despite efforts to boost community-solar-battery projects, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) rejected a plan that could have significantly increased solar energy production. This decision favored privately owned utilities like Pacific Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison, and San Diego Gas & Electric, maintaining their control over the state’s energy system.

The Impact of CPUC’s Decision

The CPUC’s ruling not only disregarded the support of a diverse coalition but also undermined the potential growth of community solar projects in California. The Net Value Billing Tariff (NVBT), which aimed to expand solar energy production by 17%, was dismissed in favor of restructuring existing programs that have shown minimal progress over the years. This ruling benefits private utility companies like PG&E, despite their history of negligent practices that have led to disasters and increased energy rates for customers.

Challenges in California’s Renewable Energy Goals

With California lagging behind other states in community solar programs, the state faces obstacles in meeting its renewable energy and climate targets. The failure to implement the NVBT could impede progress towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions and transitioning to cleaner energy sources. The state’s reliance on private utilities and the lack of support for renewable adoption contribute to the slow pace of renewable energy expansion.

Importance of Community-Solar Microgrids

Community-solar microgrids, such as those proposed under the NVBT, offer a solution to reducing emissions from the energy sector. These microgrids provide resilience during extreme weather events, lower energy costs, and minimize energy loss during transmission. However, the profit-driven motives of private utilities hinder the widespread adoption of community-solar microgrids, delaying the state’s transition to sustainable energy sources.

The Role of Socialism in Renewable Energy Transition

Unlike the United States, countries like China have made significant progress in renewable energy capacity and production. The U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods and lack of support for renewable technologies hinder the rapid shift towards cleaner energy sources. Under socialism, a more equitable transition to renewable energy could be achieved, with resources shared globally to accelerate the move towards sustainability.


California’s community solar program faces challenges due to the influence of for-profit utility companies and the lack of support for renewable energy initiatives. By prioritizing private interests over community-driven solutions, the state risks falling short of its climate goals and delaying the transition to cleaner energy sources. Embracing community-solar microgrids and adopting socialist principles could pave the way for a more sustainable and equitable renewable energy future.

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