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Has Hawaii’s solar energy industry become too popular? Viewers weigh in.

Hari Sreenivasan reads viewer comments about a recent signature segment concerning Hawaii’s booming solar energy industry.

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  • HARI SREENIVASAN:

     And now to Viewers Like You, you’re chance to comment on our work.

    Here’s what some of you had to say about last week’s signature segment from Hawaii, where some residents who tried to switch to solar power were told by the utility company to slow down.

  • Dave Wiggins said:

     Utility companies state side are really worried. So much so that they are starting to change tariffs. Quietly. Technology is changing the game.

  • Mike Lee took issue with those who had made the switch to solar:

     This is what happens when you have too many liberals living in the same place.

  • Candid One warned:

     If its condition’s inadequacy was so prominent at the turn of the millennium–and hasn’t received more than token attention since, the US doesn’t have much leeway toward an enhanced grid option. Hawaii’s example is school time.

  • MikeAThinker had this to say about the solar industry:

     …the rooftop solar industry made a (bad) assumption that they could just shove all the rooftop generated power back up the grid at any time and everything would be sweetness and butterflies. As someone who worked early in my career in the power industry – that is decidedly NOT how it works, and the system is largely not ready for that kind of ‘backflow’, particularly because it is so erratic and unreliable.

  • ProudLiberalAmerican had some advice:

     Better that these producers stay on the grid and continue to pay a small charge to help maintain it and have the excess they produce offset this cost and provide power to help replace outdated, inefficient, and polluting centralized power plants.

  • Shane Algarin added:

     Anybody who remembers Enron, the rigging of electricity markets, artificial blackouts, people dying because their medical equipment depended on electricity, knows why it’s good to escape the tentacles of the utilities.

    As always, we welcome your comments. Visit us at pbs.org/newshour, on our Facebook page, or tweet us at @NewsHour.

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