Solar losing out in Arizona

Solar proponents in Arizona have long said scaling back on incentives and programs at the state level to propagate the industry was like death by a thousand paper cuts.

Enter Vivint Solar Inc., the Utah-based installer and energy services company that has told Arizona officials it would love to come to the state to set up a shop with hundreds of jobs, but frankly, the state isn’t exactly enticing.

All those changes, with lower incentives and the Arizona Corporation Commission looking at the methods by which solar system owners are compensated for the excess power they produce, led the company to say “thanks but no thanks” to Arizona, according to Brendon Merkley, the company’s chief operating officer.

“It had the hidden message that (the state) was looking at net metering and solar in general in the state,” he said.

The company, which has about 750 employees, was planning to open installation operations similar to California-based SolarCity, but it has abandoned those plans, Merkely said.

Vivint currently is listed as the second largest installer in the U.S., putting in about five megawatts per month.

Read the full story from the Phoenix Business Journal.


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