Today (Oct. 14) the California Solar Energy Industries Association (CALSEIA) and Brightline Defense announced the results of a new poll showing very strong support from Californians for rooftop solar power. According to the new survey 90 percent of Californians favor rooftop solar power for generating electricity and 92 percent thought utility should not be able to limit peoples' ability to install solar on their homes and businesses. The organizations commissioned the poll as the California Public Utilities Commission considers whether or not to continue to require utilities to offer net metering to homeowners and small business owners as it has in the past.
"Solar power is the most popular energy resource in California, highly favored for its ability to give consumers choice and control over how to power our homes, schools, and businesses," said CalSEIA Executive Director Bernadette Del Chiaro. "The public is strongly opposed to utilities interfering with consumer access to solar by attacking net metering. They think the state should do more to encourage rooftop solar, not make it more expensive."
A very high 88 percent of respondents to the survey think that more should be done to encourage solar power at the residential level in California. A very high 80 percent of respondents disapproved of utilities' proposals to reduce their net metering programs which have helped people in California install rooftop solar panels. Fully 83 percent of respondents to the ball said they think utilities should not be able to eliminate competition from rooftop solar panel owners.
"Californians want the state to do more to make solar accessible to more people, particularly with our communities most in need of clean renewable energy," said Eddie Ahn, executive director of Brightline Defense. He pointed to figures in the study showing that 82 percent of respondents think rooftop solar as an important way to reduce the climate change threats.
By a wide margin, 74 percent, most Californians see rooftop solar as a way to reduce the need to build more polluting power plants typically located in disadvantaged communities. "It makes no sense for California to build dirty power plants when we can generate our electricity directly from the sun," Ahn said.