Faith Community Church in downtown is doubling the size and power of its rooftop solar system, which was installed last year using a method of financing for which the church is still awaiting state government approval.
Solar Freedom in Greensboro
NC WARN partnered with Faith Community Church in Greensboro on a test case challenging Duke Energy’s blockade against competition from companies that install solar with little or no upfront cost. Learn more here and in the news items below.
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State utility regulators ruled last week that a Durham nonprofit cannot install solar panels on a church, then charge for the electricity. It wasn’t a surprise – state law says only regulated utilities can do that. WFAE’s Mark Rumsey talked to environmental reporter David Boraks about the case.
While Szoka has tried to free North Carolina from utility monopolies via legislation, environmental nonprofits have tried to affect change through activism. Seeking a clarification to state law on third-party financing, NC WARN installed solar panels on the roof of Faith Community Church in Greensboro, selling the electricity to the church at a rate much lower than Duke Energy would charge.
The Rev. Nelson Johnson knows regulators don’t like the $20,000 solar panel system on the roof of his Faith Community Church in Greensboro, North Carolina. But the minister says he’s willing to go to court to protect it.
A short documentary film about NC WARN’s partnership with Faith Community Church in our Emergency Climate Response and Solar Freedom campaigns.
NC WARN has called on state regulators to reject calls by Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) to fine the advocacy group up to $1,000 a day for selling solar power to a Greensboro church and is pushing back against what it calls “ad hominem attacks and baseless suppositions” by Duke.
At Faith Community Church, there’s a sense that they’re living the story of David and Goliath because the small church in Greensboro is going up against Duke Energy. “We’re doing it for a lot of reasons,” said Rev. Nelson Johnson, pastor at Faith Community Church. “I thought it would be a wonderful thing to get a lower cost of energy and reduce the carbon footprint, and thereby be consistent as good stewards of the Earth.”
Greensboro North Carolina’s residents have been outfitting their places over the past few months with new, inexpensive solar power. Duke Energy, best known for poisoning the Earth, is not at all happy with this development and are a wealthy corporation—so it’s law time.
An advocacy group in North Carolina is trying to advance third party-owned solar through civil disobedience.