Did you know there are also magic words that can make your power bill go up? They were just used in the coal-ash cleanup settlement agreement between the Cooper administration, environmental groups, Duke Energy, and not ratepayers.
"Sue and settle" is an illiberal tool used by outside pressure groups in cahoots with willing government agencies to bring about a regulatory change they know they could not get through proper political channels.
How can it be "unfair" and not "reasonable" to sock consumers with the cleanup costs in 2014, but add extra cleanup costs in 2020 and then it’s not a problem? Is the governor no longer "on the side of consumers"?
In the ensuing decades, deregulation, open access, a multitude of state and federal incentives for solar and wind power, and the onset of fracking have dramatically changed the energy scene here. Domestic energy resources are plentiful.
Even as solar advocates boasted that solar's costs are plummeting, North Carolina's PURPA terms were locking state ratepayers into a situation where they're forced to buy all solar energy produced at exorbitant costs that go well past the actual production costs. It's a great way to make money, but no way to treat captive consumers of a vital necessity.
"Market competition"? The renewable energy industry has made it crystal clear that they want nothing to do with market competition or anything near it. Their own advocates attest that their industry cannot survey without all kinds of government help.