There used to be two power companies: CMP and Bangor Hydro. The system of providing your home with electricity now is a quagmire of different companies providing various steps, from the initial generators to the person who reads your meter. As to who owns what is beyond me, just try to read your bill.

I do know this: Maine ranks 38th highest for cost per kilowatt at 12.97 cents. The national average is 10.42 cents.

But wait, if you can afford it, you can generate you own electricity. Generating electrical power with your own solar panels and selling the excess back to your power company is called “net metering.” However, the rate that the company credits you is less than what it charges. The power companies now say that even the amount credited is too much and the loss of revenue will be unfairly passed on to those ratepayers that don’t have generation capacity. (Of course the companies don’t quantify the impact on ratepayers.)

But nowhere in their lament is mentioned the other stakeholders in the electricity business: the stockholders, not to mention the executive staff. The word is profit, which is sacred, and when that’s threatened the first strategy is to pass it on to the ratepayers.

Of course. the Governor’s Energy Office is siding with the power companies. Surprise. The fact that the country is slowly attempting to move away from the generation of electricity using fossil fuel and make use of renewable energy might have escaped the governor’s attention. Not to mention the thousands of jobs that could be Maine’s related to the new technology. Oh, but wait, according to him and his tea party/Republican/oil company friends, climate change is a hoax.

Peter Froehlich


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