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The Vote Solar Initiative and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) have announced the 2013 results of Freeing the Grid, a report that grades all 50 U.S. states on net metering and interconnection procedure policies.

Now in its seventh year of production, Freeing the Grid is designed to help state policymakers, regulators, advocates and other stakeholders understand and improve the pillars of the U.S. energy economy, the organizations note.

Highlights of the report include the following:

- The District of Columbia and Minnesota both improved their net metering grades over 2012, and not a single state grade declined. In total, more than two-thirds of U.S. states now qualify for "A" or "B" grades in regards to this policy.

- In terms of interconnection procedure policies, half of U.S. states received "A" or "B" grades, and the remaining are in need of significant improvement.

- California, Massachusetts, Oregon and Utah achieved excellence in both net metering and interconnection policies this year.

- Washington state jumped from a "D" to a "B" in its statewide interconnection procedures.

"This is an exciting transition as renewables edge closer to mainstream status," says Jane Weissman, IREC president and CEO. "However, policy design on the frontiers of our fast-changing clean energy marketplace can be a challenge to get right. Freeing the Grid helps policymakers and other stakeholders make better sense of best practices and what needs to be done in their own state to clear the way for a 21st century approach to energy."

The full report can be found here.

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