Nova Scotia Power postpones proposed one-year solar power fee – Halifax | The Canadian News

Nova Scotia Power on Thursday submitted a general application to the province’s Utility and Review Council to increase tariffs and to add a new fee for solar power customers.

Days later, after calls from a number of groups including environmental organizations, solar companies and homeowners, Nova Scotia Power issued a release saying they were making a change to their initial application.

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The original proposal included a monthly fee for solar users of $ 8 per kilowatt of electricity. That would cost about $ 960 a year for the average user.

The fee, which will require approval from the Utility and Review Board, has been proposed to be retroactive to February 1, 2022, something that has caused concern in the solar power industry.

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“People either canceled their orders or when they started researching the idea of ​​solar power, they just abandoned it altogether,” said Matt Grant, an area manager at Watts Up Solar.

“It has created just as much uncertainty in our industry.”

Solar experts say that although many turn to solar power to help the environment, installation costs can be an obstacle. However, many individuals have found that the savings are worth the investment, but the new fee changes that.

Click to play video: 'Lawyers deny proposed Nova Scotia power fee to those generating their own power'

Lawyers reject proposed Nova Scotia Power fee for those generating their own power

Lawyers reject proposed Nova Scotia Power fee for those generating their own power

An average system is about 10 years to pay back, ”said Lyle Goldberg at HES PV, one of Canada’s largest solar power suppliers.

“With these additional costs, it will take 25 years, which is essentially the lifespan of the system, so it erodes consumer confidence in purchasing solar power completely.”

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In a statement from NS Power on Tuesday afternoon, President and CEO Peter Greg said that co-operation and consultation were important to his team and that “when we do not get it right, we are committed to fixing it.”

The statement further says based on concerns raised, they are changing the date for the solar power fee from February 1, 2022 to February 1, 2023, giving the industry and potential customers a year to prepare.

Grant says this is the best outcome they can hope for in the short term, but in the long term they need to do more.

“We need to stay organized and communicate to come up with a long-term solution that will not only allow the industry to exist, but will continue to thrive,” Grant said.

Meanwhile, Nova Scotia Power’s utility will still require approval from the utility and review board and political parties have already applied for intervention status to participate in that process.

“It is clear that Nova Scotia Power’s interests are the profits of its shareholders,” said Claudia Chender, MP for the NDP.

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Nova Scotia Power seeks 10 percent rate hike and system to delay green energy costs

The concern is not just about solar power. The general tariff application also seeks to increase tariffs for residential customers by 9.9 percent over three years.

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“We need to make sure that any changes in the fee structure or changes to solar power really work for Nova Scotia and for Nova Scotians,” Chender said.

Liberal MP Carman Kerr says this is an issue that has to do with affordability.

“I would like to see a more reasonable increase in rates.”

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