Washington, DC - The Federal Trade Commission will hold a workshop in Washington, DC, on June 21, 2016, to examine competition and consumer protection issues raised by consumers’ growing use of rooftop solar panels to generate their own electric power.
The workshop will bring together a variety of stakeholders, including industry representatives, consumer advocates, academic experts, and government regulators, to discuss various issues, including:
- the current state of the solar power industry and anticipated technological advancements;
- current approaches used by utility regulators to compensate consumers for the power they generate, with a particular focus on net metering laws and regulations;
- competition among solar panel providers (“solar firms”), between solar firms and regulated utilities, and between solar generation and other power generation technologies; and
- consumer protection issues, including how consumers get the information they need to decide whether to install rooftop solar panels.
State and local regulators, which have authority over retail electric power utilities in most areas of the country, are considering various approaches to many of these complex issues. The workshop is designed to expand the Commission’s knowledge about this critical sector of the economy as it seeks to educate consumers and promote sound policies. The workshop also may provide additional information to the many states considering how to address retail electricity rates.
The FTC invites comments from the public on the topics to be covered by this workshop. For further information on the workshop and the public comment process, including a list of suggested questions open for comment, please see the workshop’s detailed public notice.
The workshop, which is free and open to the public, will be at the Constitution Center, 400 7th St., SW, Washington, DC. It will be webcast live on the FTC’s website. Registration information, an agenda, directions to the FTC’s Constitution Center building, and a list of speakers will be available in the near future on the event webpage. Advance registration is not required but is strongly encouraged.