Meeting #48 - LMI Customer Access to Solar and DER Benefits 

Tuesday, December 5, 2017                    Online registration here

Baltimore Gas and Electric Company, Baltimore, MD


Creating Opportunities for Low- and Moderate-Income (LMI) Customers to Benefit from Solar and Other Distributed Resources 
As customer interest and participation in distributed energy resource (DER) opportunities continues to rise, particularly with respect to rooftop solar, there is a growing concern that low- and moderate-income (LMI) customers may be left behind. This is due in large part to upfront costs that these consumers cannot afford to pay, resulting in social justice and equity concerns in energy services as well as missed opportunities. This MADRI meeting will focus on key issues that must be addressed to extend DER opportunities to all customers and ensure that distribution system costs are not unfairly shifted from more affluent customers to LMI customers. We will examine some of the biggest challenges for LMI customer participation in DER opportunities, and some emerging and established practices that address those challenges.


Agenda (pdf)

9:30 - 10:00am       Networking with attendees

10:00 – 10:15am     Introductions
The Honorable Michael Richard, Commissioner, MD Public Service Commission
Janine Migden-Ostrander, Regulatory Assistance Project

10:15 - 11:30am      Challenges for LMI Participation and Associated Regulatory Issues
Jacqui Patterson (presentation), National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
Melanie Santiago-Mosier (presentation), Vote Solar
(Materials: Unlocking Low-Income Access to Solar, Increasing Low-Income Access to Community Solar)
Mari Hernandez (presentation), Interstate Renewable Energy Council

We’ll start the day with an overview of the importance of expanding DER opportunities to LMI customers, the challenges that limit LMI customer participation, and the issues that come before utility regulators that have an impact on those opportunities and challenges.

11:30 - 12:45pm     Strategies for Reducing Upfront Costs
Mark Wolfe (presentation), National Energy Assistance Directors' Association
Holmes Hummel (presentation), Clean Energy Works
Janine Migden-Ostrander (presentation), Regulatory Assistance Project

LMI customers can rarely afford to purchase solar systems without financing the purchase, yet they may have a harder time obtaining financing than high-income customers. Nor can they afford energy efficiency if the utility does not provide and finance it. This panel will explore several approaches that have been implemented or proposed to address this barrier.

12:45 - 1:30pm      Lunch

1:30 - 3:00pm        Case Studies of Successful Programs
Mike Winka (presentation), NJ Board of Public Utilities
Theodore Trabue (presentation), DC Sustainable Energy Utility
Nicole Steele, Grid Alternatives

Even if LMI customers can overcome up-front cost barriers, many face barriers because they don't live in a single-family home, don't own their own home, or live in a home that doesn't have good exposure to solar insolation. This panel will review some successful examples of community solar programs and other strategies for expanding solar opportunities to such customers, focusing on examples.

3:00 – 3:15pm      Wrap-Up, Adjournment
The Honorable Michael Richard, Commissioner, MD Public Service Commission
Janine Migden-Ostrander, Regulatory Assistance Project





Remote Participation

Web address:

Meeting number: 623 778 472

Meeting password: madri1205pjm

Teleconference call-in:
1-866-546-3377 (US)

Participant passcode: 548041