On a rainy January day in Sacramento, I attended a plenary meeting of California's Renewable Energy Transmission Initiative. At one point, a smartly dressed man from one of the largest rooftop solar finance companies got up to tout the benefits of distributed energy, harping on the drawbacks of high-voltage transmission. Given the backlog of renewable energy projects in California requiring transmission, it was kind of amazing that he had bothered to come to a remote corner of the city to speak against the cause of his renewable energy brethren, an initiative that has zero impact on his firm. Needless to say, next time any of the assembled had a customer referral they would not be turning to this company.

Distributed energy will continue to grow in importance and popularity, but alone it is insufficient to address the climate crisis.