City staff are recommending Saskatoon follow the province’s lead on lowering energy credits for customers generating solar power.

The province of Saskatchewan’s net metering program allows customers with solar panels to receive credit for energy they produce. The program was nearly a victim of its own success. SaskPower suddenly ended net metering when it reached its energy cap years ahead of schedule, citing potential costs of up to $25 million by 2025.

The Crown corporation announced it would continue the program but would reduce the credit offered for solar power by roughly half and end a 20 percent rebate on solar panel purchases.

The utility estimates the 133 current clients, who would be grandfathered under the existing rate until 2029 if the program were to end, would still cost the city $30,800 each year. If the status quo were kept, it would cost $58,300 per year, not including new potential customers.

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