NM regulators ease state rule on renewable energy

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) -- In a move decried by renewable energy advocates, New Mexico regulators have narrowly approved rule changes that allow utilities to use less solar power to satisfy the state's mandates.

The changes by the Public Regulation Commission on a 3-2 vote Wednesday include giving utilities double credits for each kilowatt hour of solar they procure, and triple the credit for certain other types of renewable energy.

Supporters said the changes will help save money for consumers burdened by utilities' higher costs for renewable energy.

Critics said the decision will hurt the solar industry and restrict diversity of power sources for the grid.