76% Of Coloradans Support Rooftop Solar, Poll Finds

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Originally published in the ECOreport

Colorado Statewide Survey August 2014
A telephone poll, carried out between August 21-24, found that 76% of Coloradans support net metering. 73% were opposed to the state’s largest utility, XCEL Energy, cutting the amount of credit it provides for customers who feed electricity into the grid. Yet according to Gabriel Romero, a media relations specialist from XCEL Energy,  “The only thing regarding rooftop solar that’s on the table right now is a discussion about how to classify net metering.”

Keating Research and Public Opinion Strategies contacted 500 registered voters from all across Colorado. According to information in the form, respondents were from all political persuasions and income levels.

“This poll demonstrates increased public understanding of and support for solar net metering and a willingness to defend the tremendous benefits it has already delivered to Colorado,” said Walker Wright, spokesperson for The Alliance for Solar Choice (TASC) and Director of Government Affairs at Sunrun. “Coloradans want the choice for self-generated solar power, which contributes to the grid’s improvement while creating jobs in a growing industry.”

TASC commissioned the poll, which you can see an overview of here.

Colorado Statewide Survey August 2014
Colorado Statewide Survey August 2014

Romero said he had not seen it, but from my questions he suspected it is a partisan poll.

“There isn’t a concerted effort to stop solar. We’re not changing our rebate amount. We have not proposed cutting anything,” he added. “The issue before the Public Utilities Commission is how to classify net metering. Is it a subsidy? is it not a subsidy? It is a discussion about what net metering is and how to classify it.”

Colorado Statewide Survey August 2014

TASC is concerned about what could transpire as a result of that discussion. XCEL has tried to reduce the amount paid to solar owners  before. This “discussion” could open the door for the utility to try again.

Romero said XCEL and the the solar industry have both expressed their opinions, and it is up to the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to decide what is fair.

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Roy L Hales

is the President of Cortes Community Radio , CKTZ 89.5 FM, where he has hosted a half hour program since 2014, and editor of the Cortes Currents (formerly the ECOreport), a website dedicated to exploring how our lifestyle choices and technologies affect the West Coast of British Columbia. He is a research junkie who has written over 2,000 articles since he was first published in 1982. Roy lives on Cortes Island, BC, Canada.

Roy L Hales has 441 posts and counting. See all posts by Roy L Hales

5 thoughts on “76% Of Coloradans Support Rooftop Solar, Poll Finds

  • Polls don’t mean much but why would 6% of people be “strongly opposed” to rooftop solar panels? Were they frightened by the sun as a child?

    • I can think of two groups of strongly opposed.

      1) Anti-renewable based on political or financial reasons. People opposed to anything the ‘left’ supports and people who make their living from coal/nuclear.

      2) People concerned about how panels on roofs change the look of a traditional or upscale neighborhood.

      Of course if it’s only 6%, then it could be nutcases….

    • The headline is probably a little misleading. The actual question from the poll was (and I encourage you to read http://b.3cdn.net/solarchoice/20a40661d7ad707353_fxm62yg5q.pdf for the full text)

      … In general, would you say you support or oppose this policy of net metering?

      The way I read it, people don’t really oppose solar, but regulations on utilities, or maybe specifically the demand that they maintain a policy which, frankly, cannot scale to their entire customer base.

  • I agree with DGW in that telephone polls are losing meaning. I still have my land line (2 of them) for business purposes but it goes directly to voice mail. I think most people 50 and below have ditched them…ok, some have probably switched to vonage or basic or magic. I think they should have to ask the responders age in these polls.

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