Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Vote Solar’s Adam Browning elaborates his views on solar+batteries vis a vis utilities

 In an article published yesterday by Bloomberg entitled “Battery-Stored Solar Power Sparks Backlash from Utilities,” which describes efforts by California’s privately-owned utilities to block network access for residential and commercial solar systems seeking net-metering benefits, at:

Adam Browning, executive director of the San Francisco-based lobbying group Vote Solar Initiative, was quoted as saying, “The next step is that people with solar and batteries will find a way to make it work without utilities.”

Etopia News contacted Mr. Browning, asking him to elaborate his views on the evolution of battery-assisted solar systems and their relationship with utilities.  He responded with this statement:

I think the parallel to the telecom industry is striking.  At one point, customers could only lease a landline telephone from AT&T.  And it came in one, maybe two colors.  With the advent of the mobile phone, choice, innovation, and value exploded…and customers finally had an option other than to simply take whatever their phone company decided.  In the case of AT&T, they were faced with developing the mobile business their customer wanted, or losing their customers.  Solar + batteries presents that same proposition: either utilities figure out a way to make it work for their customers, or customers will figure out a way to make it work without utilities.  With the drop in costs driven by expanding scale for both solar and batteries (the latter driven by EVs [electric vehicles]), that day is not far off.”

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