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New Mexico Supreme Court Upholds Community Solar Program, Ensuring Equitable Access to Energy Savings


The New Mexico Supreme Court has recently issued a landmark ruling in favor of the state's community solar program, upholding the current rules and paving the way for its continued implementation. The court sided with the Public Regulation Commission (PRC) along with a coalition of intervenor-appellees, including the Coalition for Community Solar Access (CCSA), the Coalition of Sustainable Communities New Mexico (CSCNM), City of Las Cruces, New Energy Economy, and the Renewable Energy Industries Association of New Mexico.


By affirming the legality and adherence to regulations, this decision ensures that New Mexico's community solar program will proceed as planned, delivering the promised benefits to homeowners, renters, and businesses across the state. The Community Solar Act, passed in 2021, enables these participants to subscribe to electricity generated by community solar facilities interconnected with New Mexico's major utility companies, including SPS.


Under this innovative program, New Mexicans can expect to see significant savings on their utility bills, ranging from 10% to 30%. It is worth noting that low-income subscribers stand to benefit the most, as these savings can have a profound impact on their household budgets. The emphasis on affordability and inclusivity is what sets the community solar program apart, making renewable energy accessible to a broader range of individuals and fostering a more equitable energy landscape.


"This decision from the New Mexico Supreme Court is a monumental step towards democratizing solar energy in our state," stated Kevin Cray, Mountain West Senior Director for CCSA. "The community solar program represents a significant opportunity to create a more resilient and equitable grid, allowing new communities to embrace clean energy while providing tangible cost savings for hard-working families across New Mexico."


Cray further expressed enthusiasm for the collaboration with local partners to implement the first phase of the program successfully. Furthermore, he emphasized the commitment to expand the program in the future, ensuring that more individuals can benefit from its advantages. By embracing community solar, New Mexico is demonstrating its dedication to a sustainable future while addressing the energy needs of its residents.


In conclusion, the New Mexico Supreme Court's decision to uphold the state's community solar program stands as a triumph for renewable energy advocates and individuals seeking accessible clean energy solutions. Going forward, the expansion of this program will undoubtedly contribute to a more equitable and resilient energy grid, while empowering communities and individuals to embrace the benefits of solar power.

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