Solar panels in Boothbay Harbor (Photo by William Byers, wikimedia.com)
Solar panels in Boothbay Harbor (Photo by William Byers, wikimedia.com)
On Tuesday, Governor Janet Mills signed into law LD 91, “An Act to Eliminate Gross Metering.” Under the LePage administration, in 2016 Maine adopted “gross metering,” which required solar panel owners to install a second meter to measure excess energy they produced through their solar array that was supplied back to Maine’s electric grid. That electricity, even if used on-site, was given a lower value. The bill signed by Mills on Tuesday reverses that decision and restores net metering in Maine so that now Maine residents who own a solar PV system willreceive a one-to-one credit for the excess electricity they produce per kilowatt hour.

“For too long, Maine has lagged behind other states in embracing policies that advance the future of solar power,” said Governor Mills. “That ends today. By signing into law this bill, we are restoring net metering, resetting Maine’s solar policy, and charting the course for the growth of solar power to lower electricity bills and combat climate change. There is a lot more work to be done, and I look forward to working with the Legislature to send a clear signal that Maine’s clean energy future is bright.”

LD 91 was sponsored by Representative Seth Berry (D-Bowdoinham). “Net metering is only a partial compensation for the incredible value we all receive from our neighbors’ solar arrays,” said Berry. “I want to thank Gov. Mills for her leadership and support as we take this first small step toward a locally controlled, clean-energy future for our state.”