I just read about these today on a german website. In Germany even as a private individual you can sell electricity by feeding into the grid whatever surplus you have from your solar installation or your backyard windmill and the tariffs that you get are so good that this law in Germany has caused emission reductions they had set for 2010 have already been reached and now they go for 45 percent greenhouse reduction by 2030 which is pretty spectacular. Also this has turned out good for the economy because the mount of people working in the renewable energy industry in Germany doubled from 2004 to 2006 to now 250,000 people. It's always good when something good is also economically beneficial because then it might actually work.
Anyways, several other countries are looking into this now and I was excited to read here http://www.eere.energy.gov/states/ne.../news_id=11316 that someone is proposing this as a law in the State of Michigan now. I'm somewhat doubtful it will pass in Michigan because this state has not been one of the forerunners in environment (can't even get a decent tax break when you insulate your house).
I do have some visions of a solar roof and a small windmill behind the garage though Imagine the excitement at every storm hehehe
Investor owned utilities (this doesn't include electric co-ops) have been required to buy back power from small produces fro many years. Lots of homes sell back solar or wind produced electricity, although this proposed Michigan legislations seems to make it more complicated and for some, more profitable. They will probably make it unworkable for the average guy. It is pretty easy in Wisconsin, though.
Well, this system has been proven to be very succesfull, so I wouldn't mind seeing more of that. It should also create more jobs in renewable energy. Whatever it takes to use more of the energy that goes to waste right now I'd say (as in wind and solar energy).
In Ontario, you can use solar cells to reduce your bill to zero, they don't allow credits. You can also sell solar generated power to a utility for 40 cents per kwh (much less even for wind) but there are so many restrictions and the need for a a dedicated phone line that it doesn't make much sense, but I'd love to live under a giant solar panel... and keep the meter stopped.