- Talk of a utility death spiral is “last year's hype” driven by the Edison Electric Institute, a trade association for investor-owned utilities, according to Michael Peevey, California Public Utilities Commission president.
- The death spiral won't happen because utilities have adapted to changes before and the smart ones will do so again, Peevey said.
- Companies that fight change – like trying to block net metering – may not survive, according to Peevey, while utilities that focus on service and “go with the flow” will.
The death spiral concept is overblown, but it does point to the massive changes underway that loosen the traditional ties between utilities and their customers.
By the way, the solution to the net metering fight is a “reasonable fixed charge,” Peevey said. Of course, solar developers and utilities define “reasonable” quite differently.