In many states a utility company is not required to pay you for the excess power your solar panels generate.
The current approach is called "Net Metering" which means that if in a given month you produce more energy than you use a credit is earned which can be applied to a future bill. This is a good system in principle, but many states grant the excess power to the utilities after a period of time without allowing for compensation to the producer. This is tantamount to government sanctioned theft of service. If a Utility is going to sell the power that you generate to someone else, wouldn't you want to be fairly compensated?
In most of the states listed in this petition the power you generate in excess of your use is either "granted to utility at end of 12-month billing cycle" or "granted to utility at end of year." California is one exception where the utility is not granted the excess automatically, but in that case it is instead granted when service is terminated. In the case of California not only are customers prevented from selling their generated power, but clearly state that "Excess bill credits may not be used to offset taxes, minimum charges, or other charges which are not based on energy." implying that there is no monetary value to the power generated. Alaska has similar policies to California in that the credits do not expire and that the customer may never be compensated.
Altogether this shows a clear policy: We are not entitled to fair compensation. No matter how much energy we produce, these states actively prevent us from seeing profit as producers of renewable energy.
We the undersigned ask that this policy changes in our respective states. We ask that all provisions granting excess power to utilities without compensation be eliminated and that we be fairly compensated for the power we generate. We define fair compensation as a check dispersed annually or monthly (at residential customer's discretion) at a rate of no less than the amount that utility would otherwise pay a corporate producer of similar power.
Considering the advances being made in solar power this issue will only become more important over the coming years.
Target states: Illinois, Missouri, Arkansas, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Montana, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Vermont, Alaska, California, and Utah
Petition will be to delivered to the President of the United States, and to the Governor of each above state at the time the survey is completed or when 1,000,000 signatures have been reached.