Mr Hochschild said the commission heard some opposition during the development of the code change, particularly from Southern California Gas, which supplies much of the natural gas to residential, commercial and industrial customers in Southern California. .
The head of the organization that represents the state’s solar power and battery companies said that while she felt the code change was necessary, policies being considered by other state regulators could undermine the benefits.
The official, Bernadette Del Chiaro, executive director of the California Solar and Storage Association, said while utilities have welcomed the commission’s plan, they have offered to cut the benefits homeowners and businesses receive for the excess electricity that they produce and send to the grid. .
Owners of rooftop solar power systems receive compensation equivalent to the retail cost of electricity, an arrangement that utility companies say is unfair to those without such systems. The California Public Utilities Commission, a separate regulator that oversees investor-owned utilities, is considering a modification to the arrangement, known as net energy metering.
“Any change in net metering compromises these standards,” Ms. Del Chiaro said. “Net metering is the little guy’s only opportunity to get relief, and they want to put the kibosh on it. “
Californians have felt the urgency to stop using fossil fuels as climate change has brought about extreme weather conditions, which have contributed to some of the state’s most devastating wildfires. And beyond reducing carbon emissions, solar power has been embraced as a way to avoid blackouts.
Investor-owned utilities cut off power for a week to prevent electrical equipment from starting fires. Consumers have therefore increasingly sought solar panels and storage batteries as secondary energy sources.