As a homeowner with a solar energy system, I was pleased to hear that the Montana Public Service Commission rejected NorthWestern Energy’s plan to charge us more for electricity.

PG&E, for example, the major provider of power in California, has to pay folks who put excess power back into their system. In spite of NorthWestern’s commercials patting themselves on the back for what wonderful neighbors they are, they claim that they are paying too much for surplus solar power from customers who net meter, according to your story on Tuesday.

We have been putting power back into their system for about six years and have yet to see a refund. In fact, one month last winter, when we had so much snow in the Bitterroot and our panels were covered, our bill, normally just for the connection, went up 150%. Not much in the way of dollars, but annoying in principle.

I think that the PSC should make them pay a wholesale price for excess power, which they then sell at a profit to others.

Sidney Mehlschmidt,


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