"Feed-in Tariffs for Solar Continue To Spread"

"Variations on the policy that jumpstarted Germany’s decade-long boom in rooftop solar systems are taking root in more cities in the United States.

The policy, called a feed-in tariff, offers small-scale producers of solar energy long-term contracts (usually at above-market rates) for the electricity they sell. Last week, the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, which serves 1.4 million people, approved a feed-in tariff that allows homeowners with solar panels a chance to sign up for 10, 15 or 20 years of guaranteed payments. The policy will take effect next January. The city of Gainesville, Fla., adopted a feed-in tariff this spring, as did Vermont. Washington state also has such a policy, and Hawaii is currently considering one.

While feed-in tariffs are most closely associated with solar photovoltaic panels, utilities managing the programs in Vermont and Sacramento will also pay a set price for electricity generated from other renewable sources, like wind."

Felicity Barringer reports for the New York Times July 22, 2009.

See Also:

Vehicle-To-Grid Technology Gains Some Traction

"Why the Microgrid Could Be the Answer to Our Energy Crisis" (Fast Company)

Thursday, July 23, 2009