SRP is stifling rooftop solar to prevent competition. Will a federal court stop it?

The Salt River Project includes a service area of about 240,000 acres spanning portions of Maricopa, Gila and Pinal Counties in central Arizona.

Opinion: SRP jacked up electricity rates by 65% for customers who installed rooftop solar. It is a discriminatory pricing scheme designed to hurt rooftop solar companies, the utility’s competitors.

By Jean Su and Robin Silver /opinion contributors | Arizona Republic

Overreaching on rooftop solar may raise uncomfortable questions about SRP’s governance.

There was a time when the Salt River Project was held up as a democratically governed utility that faithfully served the public interest, powering ranchers, farmers and families.

Today, hundreds of thousands of SRP customers have no say in how the century-old company operates or who serves on its board because they don’t own land, which is definitely not democratic. The SRP board has jacked up rates for solar customers and is stifling the essential transition to clean energy, which is clearly not in the public interest.

Recently the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments in an antitrust case brought by SRP solar customers after the utility increased its electricity rates, penalizing them for going solar and pushing solar competitors out of the marketplace.

This case has far-reaching consequences for Arizona and the country.

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