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February 5, 2014

Kansas utilities argue cuts to credit for consumers with solar panels, windmills

Utilities in Kansas are lobbying legislators to rewrite a state renewable energy law to provide less of a financial benefit to consumers who install solar panels or windmills.

Utilities in Kansas are lobbying legislators to rewrite a state renewable energy law to provide less of a financial benefit to consumers who install solar panels or windmills.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that bills introduced in the House and Senate worry solar energy advocates.

Under the state’s so-called “net metering” law, consumers who use renewable resources and generate more electricity than they need get full credit for each extra kilowatt hour they send to the electric grid.

Westar Energy, the state’s largest electric company, says the practice does not account for fixed costs faced by utilities, such as power plants and lines.

But solar-energy device inventor Mark Moser of Manhattan says the changes sought by utilities would make Kansas among the worst states for solar businesses.

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