A bill which would make it less desirable to use renewable energy in our state, Senate Bill 309, is headed to the desk of Gov. Eric Holcomb. If he signs it, Hoosiers will be seeking to harness renewable energy will be stymied unnecessarily for years to come.
As CNHI Statehouse Reporter Scott L. Miley reported his front page story Saturday, the controversial bill has already passed both chambers of the Indiana General Assembly despite heavy opposition.
“Environmental groups have opposed SB 309 because it would disallow net metering for anyone installing solar or wind systems after July 1, 2022,” he reported. “Net metering is the system by which solar panel or wind turbine owners receive reimbursements after sending excess energy to local utilities. The process is seen as an incentive for more energy users to install solar or wind devices.”
The timing of this potential debacle on the same weekend as Earth Day is truly amazing. Climate change is real. Fossil fuels are a finite resource. We need to be doing everything we can to encourage people in this state to move away from the unsustainable track we’re on. Other states are taking steps forward, while we contemplate jumping backward.
This isn’t just a tree-hugging, bleeding-heart issue. This is about jobs. As Miley reported over a dozen executives from the state’s technology and finance industry have pointed to the job killing potential of this bill, saying it would “impose numerous roadblocks to customer-owned renewable energy, which would seriously hamper the growth of this promising sector.”
We have to start thinking differently on this issue. Besides pacifying special interest groups with an agenda, there’s no reason to move forward with this legislation.