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Clean Power Colorado solar net metering survey

Published on December 5th, 2013 | by Zachary Shahan


Colorado Residents Support Solar Net Metering — Duh!


A new Colorado poll finds that the state’s residents support solar net metering, a standard policy in 43 states across the country that basically says that homeowners and businesses with solar panel systems should get credited the retail rate of electricity for any excess electricity they send back to the grid. In other words, it’s basically the same as if they had cut their electricity use by that amount.

This goes against the efforts of utility monopoly Xcel to change this policy. But it’s consistent with poll after poll after poll showing that consumers support greater support for solar power and think that more should be done by governments and utilities to increase the use of solar power.

A news release about the survey results summarizes the findings:

The bipartisan research team of Public Opinion Strategies and Keating Research surveyed 400 voters throughout Colorado from November 17-19, 2013. Poll results show that statewide support for net metering exceeds 70 percent in every region around the state and is greater than 60 percent across all of the key voter groups in Colorado.

Seventy-eight percent of Coloradans support net metering, with nearly half (45 percent) strongly in support. Only 11 percent of the state’s electorate indicate opposition to the policy, with a mere 5 percent strongly opposed, and another one-in-ten (11 percent) unsure of their views on this policy.

The poll also finds that Coloradans aspires to have much more rooftop solar in the future, and intend to benefit from net metering’s fair credit: A plurality of state voters (47 percent) say they do not have rooftop solar but are interested in someday purchasing it.  Among these respondents, 80 percent oppose Xcel’s proposal to change the net metering policy.  Even among the 46 percent of state residents who are not interested in obtaining rooftop solar, more than two-thirds oppose this proposed change to net metering.

Colorado solar net metering survey

There’s nothing surprising here. The only surprising thing is that utility monopolies like Xcel would be bullish enough to try to cut metering policies off at the knees.

Note one more very important finding from a Colorado solar study released a few months ago: “solar power systems in Colorado Xcel Energy districts provide up to $11 million in benefits for customers.”

Solar is saving the state’s electricity consumers money. Solar power providers — including homeowners and small businesses — should be paid their fair dues for that. Heck, they should be paid even more!

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Read more Colorado cleantech news if you’re particularly interested in The Centennial State.

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About the Author

is the director of CleanTechnica, the most popular cleantech-focused website in the world, and Planetsave, a world-leading green and science news site. He has been covering green news of various sorts since 2008, and he has been especially focused on solar energy, electric vehicles, and wind energy for the past four years or so. Aside from his work on CleanTechnica and Planetsave, he's the Network Manager for their parent organization – Important Media – and he's the Owner/Founder of Solar Love, EV Obsession, and Bikocity. To connect with Zach on some of your favorite social networks, go to and click on the relevant buttons.

  • Matthew

    First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.

    • Zachary Shahan

      Ha, excellent insert here :D

  • putting4par

    I’ve worked in the solar industry here in Colorado. Yes, many of the people of Colorado are for solar power. That’s not the problem. Like the article suggests, the major electric utility in the state, Xcel Energy, is vehemently opposed to it. They will do anything they can to stop it.

  • S.Nkm

    It doesn’t matter how good something is, there is always a significant group of people that somewhat opposes or strongly opposes it.

  • matthew

    When the energy companies or fossil fuel industry has to attack us = we’re winning. Shame that they don’t believe in democracy.

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