Maryland Solar Water Heating Bill Moves Forward
The House of Delegates voted 132-5 Saturday, following the Senate’s unanimous 47-0 vote March 17.
The legislation would allow owners of solar water-heating systems to sell renewable energy credits. The credits are bought by utilities and power companies that need to meet government quotas of renewable energy generation; if they can’t generate enough green power on their own, they can buy credits from someone else who has.
The ability to generate credits via solar water heating makes those systems a more attractive investment and rewards the buyers for using less fossil fuel. That is expected to be a boon for the green power industry, seen as a growing source of new jobs.
Gov. Martin O’Malley pitched the legislation along with dozens of lawmakers as co-sponsors. House and Senate versions of the bill still must be passed by the opposite chamber, which is expected since the two bills are identical. O’Malley is then expected to sign off.