Shared Renewable Energy Comment Period Ends March 31st


We told you about the beginnings of our microgrid campaign. A microgrid is basically a system of solar panels (or a windmill(s), set up at the neighborhood level (or in a centralized location), that residents who live nearby can access. We want to establish more of these in Buffalo and in the state of New York. We've teamed up with other grass roots organizations in the state working to make this a reality. Renewable clean energy is the future of energy consumption, and it's time for New York to join the party.

As you may or may not know, the New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) is responsible for regulating energy decisions in the State of New York. We've been telling you about the REV proceedings, which is just one of many public proceedings that they initiate every year. But the the comment period for Shared Renewable Energy in New York State ends tomorrow Tuesday, March 31st. The most important thing about this particular proceeding is the option of us being able to create micogrids in New York at the neighborhood level. That is we can begin to put these things directly into our communities for the benefit of the people who live there. Our position is that we want more access to these types of green, energy saving, and money saving options for renters as well as home owners. 

We need all of you to make an electronic comment today. Below is what the simple form looks like. At the very bottom of this post is a sample comment that you can use. You can click this link to begin. 


Dear Secretary Burgess, (Secretary of PSC)

I am a New York resident and I support giving all New Yorkers the opportunity to participate directly in our growing clean energy economy through a new shared renewable energy program, also known as 'community net metering.'

This pioneering concept will empower renters and millions of others to choose solar or wind for the first time - and in doing so unleash tremendous private investment in a more resilient energy system, local jobs and healthier communities up and down the state. Whether or not New Yorkers own a suitable property for installing renewable energy themselves, this program will allow electric customers to subscribe to a local renewable energy project and get credit on their utility bills for their portion of the clean power produced.

This program also holds the promise to create the opportunity to expand access to solar and other renewable energy in low- and moderate-income communities. To ensure that this promise is fulfilled, I encourage the PSC in partnership with NYSERDA to establish policies and incentives to overcome the barriers to participation that low-income customers might face, such as upfront costs, credit checks, and lack of opportunities to find out about program offerings.

To maximize the benefit of ‘community net metering,’ I encourage the PSC to make the program as flexible as possible, to allow for all customer types to participate both as hosts and recipients of shared renewable energy projects. The PSC should account for the diversity of New York State, and ensure that the program works for urban settings, such as shared solar arrays on top of apartment buildings, as well as rural settings, such as shared wind turbines between a few adjacent farms.

Let’s build on New York’s renewable energy success by providing greater access to the clean energy options that New Yorkers want. I urge the PSC to create a shared renewable energy program for New York as quickly as possible.