Net Metering in Utah

Net Metering

Only 30 ft tall kicks in at 6mph and at 12mph produces 36kw enough to power 30 average homes

Last Updated May 25, 2016

Program Overview

    • Implementing Sector:

      State

    • Category:

      Regulatory Policy

    • State:

      Utah

    • Incentive Type:

      Net Metering

    • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

      Geothermal Electric, Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Hydroelectric, Hydrogen, Combined Heat & Power, Landfill Gas, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small), Anaerobic Digestion

    • Applicable Sectors:

      Commercial, Industrial, Local Government, Nonprofit, Residential, Schools, State Government, Federal Government, Agricultural, Institutional

    • Applicable Utilities:

      Investor-owned utilities, electric cooperatives

    • System Capacity Limit:

      2 MW for non-residential; 25 kW for residential

    • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

      20% of 2007 peak demand for Rocky Mountain Power; 0.1% of utility’s 2007 peak demand for co-ops

    • Net Excess Generation:

      For RMP residential and small commercial customers, excess kWh credits are applied to the customer’s next bill at retail rate; any credits remaining at end of 12-month billing cycle are granted by the utility to a low-income assistance program or other purpose approved by the PSC. For RMP large commercial and industrial customers with demand charges, customers may choose between valuing net excess generation at an avoided cost-based rate or at an alternative rate based on utility revenue and sales contained in FERC Form No. 1.
      For co-op customers, net excess generation is credited at avoided cost rate.

    • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

      Customer owns RECs

    • Meter Aggregation:

      Allowed at same or adjacent location

Summary

Note: S.B. 208, enacted in May 2014, requires the Utah Public Service Commission (PSC) to convene a process to evaluate the costs and benefits of net energy metering, and to determine a “just and reasonable” rate structure considering those costs and benefits. The PSC opened a docket, 14-035-114, for comments and proceedings related to the costs and benefits of net metering. The PSC issued an Order in November 2015 accepting a framework for assessing net metering costs and benefits that will utilize a comparison between a cost of service study assuming no net metering customers and the results of a cost of service study for net metering customers. Rocky Mountain Power must file the two studies no later than the date it files its next general rate case.

Eligibility and Availability

Utah law requires the state’s only investor-owned utility, Rocky Mountain Power (RMP), and most electric cooperatives* to offer net metering to customers who generate electricity using solar energy, wind energy, hydropower, hydrogen, biomass, landfill gas, or geothermal energy. Net metering is available for residential systems up to 25 kilowatts (kW) in capacity and non-residential systems up to two megawatts (MW) in capacity, whether owned by the utility customer or a third party.

The PSC has regulatory authority over RMP and was authorized by the state legislature to change certain aspects of their net metering rules, but the PSC does not have authority over the cooperative utilities. As a result, a February 2009 order issued by the PSC changed some of the net metering rules for RMP, but the cooperatives are not obligated to adopt them and may continue offering net metering under the minimum terms established by the state legislature.

Rocky Mountain Power

Aggregate Capacity Limit

The PSC’s February 2009 ruling raised the aggregate capacity limit for RMP from 0.1% to 20% of the utility’s 2007 peak demand. In establishing a significantly higher enrollment limit, the PSC also requires RMP to submit an annual net metering report, due by July 1 of every year, informing the commission of the number of net-metered systems, the capacity of each installation, the total capacity of net metering systems, and any problems or barriers with the net-metering tariff.

Net Excess Generation

For residential and small commercial customers, RMP will issue a kWh credit (at the retail rate) for monthly net excess generation produced by the net metering facility and apply that credit to the next billing period. Large commercial and industrial customers with demand charges that generate excess generation will be given a choice between valuing excess generation at an avoided cost based rate; or valuing excess generation at an alternative rate based on utility revenue and sales contained in FERC Form No. 1.

Any net excess generation at the end of an annualized billing period will expire with no compensation to the customer. The annualized billing period is a 12-month billing cycle beginning on April 1 of one year and ending on March 31 of the following year. Utilities may also establish one additional annualized billing period. RMP opted to make their additional billing cycle run from September to October for irrigation customers on Schedule 10.

Utilities must reserve the avoided cost value of any net metering credits remaining at the end of an annualized billing cycle, and apply those funds to their low income assistance programs, or another purpose determined by the governing authority.

Minimum Bill & Additional Charges

The PSC also ruled that net metering customers are not exempt from the minimum bill charge that all customers must pay. In August 2014, the PSC declined RMP’s proposed facilities charge for net metered customers until it has completed the legislatively mandated review of net metering costs and benefits.

Meter Aggregation

If a net metering customer has multiple meters at one location or an adjacent location, the meters may be aggregated for billing purposes. The customer must notify the utility of the order in which they want the kWh credits to be applied to the meters.

REC Ownership

The PSC also clarified in its ruling that all renewable energy credits associated with the electricity produced by the system remain with the customer, unless otherwise agreed to or designated by the customer.

Click here for Rocky Mountain Power’s interconnection agreement and application for net metering service.

Electric Cooperatives

Aggregate Capacity Limit

Cooperatives are obligated to provide net metering until net metered systems account for 0.1% of the utility’s 2007 peak demand.

Net Excess Generation

If a customer generates more electricity than the customer uses during a billing period, then the utility must credit the customer for the net excess generation at a rate equal to the utility’s avoided cost or higher. Customer net excess generation is carried over to the next customer’s next monthly bill during a 12-month period. Any net excess generation at the end of an annualized billing period will expire with no compensation to the customer. The annualized billing period is a 12-month billing cycle beginning on April 1 of one year and ending on March 31 of the following year. Utilities may also establish one additional annualized billing period.

Electric cooperatives must apply the avoided cost value of any net metering credits remaining at the end of an annualized billing cycle to their low income assistance programs, or another purpose determined by the Public Service Commission (PSC).

Additional Charges

Electric cooperatives may not levy additional charges unless authorized by its board of directors. Members of a cooperative who disagree with the charges approved by the board of directors may file a complaint with the PSC after filing a complaint with the cooperative’s board or directors.

* Beginning in March 2008, electric cooperatives serving fewer than 1,000 customers in Utah may discontinue making net metering available to customers that are not already net metering. In addition, electric cooperatives not headquartered in Utah that serve fewer than 5,000 customers in Utah are authorized to offer net metering to their Utah customers in accordance with a tariff, schedule or other requirement of the appropriate authority in the state in which the co-op’s headquarters are located.

Authorities

    • Date Enacted:
      3/15/2002 (subsequently amended)

    • Effective Date:
      5/6/2002

    • Date Enacted:
      2/12/2009

    • Effective Date:
      4/1/2009

Contact

  • Organization:

    Utah Public Service Commission

  • Address:

    160 East 300 South
    Salt Lake City, UT 84111

  • Phone:

    (801) 530-6711

  • E-Mail:

Memos

Loading…

    • 05/25/2016 by Autumn Proudlove

      Annual review; no formal policy updates. The PSC issued an Order in November 2015 accepting a framework for assessing net metering costs and benefits that will utilize a comparison between a cost of service study assuming no net metering customers and the results of a cost of service study for net metering customers. Rocky Mountain Power must file the two studies no later than the date it files its next general rate case.

  • 04/10/2015 by Brian Lips

    SB 110 made one minor change. Previously, any NEG returned to the utility after the annual billing period had to be applied to low-income customers, or be used for some other purpose determined by the PSC. SB 100 changed the language so that the “governing authority” has the say.

Net Metering in California

Net Metering

Only 30 ft tall kicks in at 6mph and at 12mph produces 36kw enough to power 30 average homes

Last Updated May 12, 2016

Program Overview

    • Implementing Sector:

      State

    • Category:

      Regulatory Policy

    • State:

      California

    • Incentive Type:

      Net Metering

    • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

      Geothermal Electric, Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Municipal Solid Waste, Fuel Cells using Non-Renewable Fuels, Landfill Gas, Tidal, Wave, Ocean Thermal, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small), Anaerobic Digestion, Fuel Cells using Renewable Fuels

    • Applicable Sectors:

      Commercial, Industrial, Local Government, Nonprofit, Residential, Schools, State Government, Federal Government, Agricultural, Institutional

    • Applicable Utilities:

      All utilities except LADWP

    • System Capacity Limit:

      1 MW
      5 MW for systems operating under the bill credit transfer program authorized by Public Utilities Code 2830. System must be owned by, operated by, or on property under the control of, a local government or university.

    • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

      5% of aggregate customer peak demand (statewide limit of 500 MW for fuel cells)

    • Net Excess Generation:

      Credited to customer’s next bill at retail rate. After 12-month cycle, customer may opt to roll over credit indefinitely or to receive payment for credit at a rate equal to the 12-month average spot market price for the hours of 7 am to 5 pm for the year in which the surplus power was generated. (If customer makes no affirmative decision, credit is granted to utility with no compensation for customer.)

    • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

      Customer owns RECs. If customer receives payment for net excess generation at the end of a 12-month cycle, utility owns RECs associated with those electricity credits.

    • Meter Aggregation:

      Virtual net metering allowed for multi-tenant properties.
      Meter aggregation allowed for local governments if all participating accounts receive a time-of-use rate.
      Pending determination from the CPUC and ratemaking authorities of other utilities, meter aggregation may be allowed for all customers with multiple meters on parcels of land contiguous to the location of the renewable energy system. See below for more explanation.

Summary

Note: The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) issued a decision in April 2016 establishing rules for net metering PV systems paired with storage devices 10 kW or smaller. See below for more details. Additionally, the CPUC issued a decision in January 2016, on its net metering successor tariff. The summary below describes the existing net metering rules, but a description of the successor tariff can be found below. 

California’s net-metering law originally took effect in 1996 and applies to all utilities with one exception*. The law has been amended numerous times since its enactment, most recently by AB 327 of 2013.

Eligible Technologies
The original law applied to wind-energy systems, solar-electric systems and hybrid (wind/solar) systems. In September 2002, legislation (AB 2228) allowed biogas-electric facilities up to 1 megawatt (MW) to net meter until December 31, 2005, under a pilot program. This pilot program was extended until December 31, 2009, upon the enactment of AB 728 in September 2005. SB 489 did away with the pilot program, and instead allowed for biomass and all other RPS-eligible technologies to participate in net metering under the same terms available for solar and wind.

Other legislation enacted in October 2003 (AB 1214) made fuel cells eligible for net metering until the cumulative rated generating capacity of net-metered fuel cells reaches 112.5 MW statewide. AB 2165 increased the statewide maximum to 500 MW, and requires each utility to provide net metering for eligible fuel cells until it reaches its proportionate share of the 500 MW cap. Previously restricted to fuel cells that begin operation prior to January 1, 2014, AB 2165 of 2012 extended the eligibility deadline to January 1, 2015, and AB 327 of 2013 further extended the deadline to January 1, 2017.

Aggregate Capacity Limit
The aggregate capacity limit of net-metered systems in a utility’s service territory is equal to 5% of the utility’s aggregate customer peak demand. Historically, all three investor-owned utilities had interpreted “aggregate customer peak demand” differently, and had been using different methodologies to calculate their net metering caps. The CPUC approved a proposed decision in May 2012 to more clearly define “aggregate customer peak demand” for all utilities. The decision defines aggregate customer peak demand as the sum of the non-coincident peak demands of all utility customers. This methodology was later codified by the Legislature with AB 327 of 2013. All investor-owned utilities must use the methodology explained above to calculate their aggregate capacity limit. Municipal utilities are not bound by the CPUC definition of “aggregate customer peak demand” and are free to define it for themselves.

AB 327 of 2013 specifies that “large electrical corporations” with more than 100,000 service connections must offer net metering until it reaches its net metering program limit or July 1, 2017, whichever comes first. For additional clarity, the legislation assigns a specific net metering program limit for each of the three large electrical corporations, as shown below. Beginnning July 1, 2017, or when the utiility reaches its net metering program limit, the utility must offer a standard contract or tariff, as described below.

Net metering program limits:

  • San Diego Gas and Electric: 607 MW of nameplate generating capacity
  • Southern California Edison: 2,240 MW of nameplate generating capacity
  • Pacific Gas and Electric: 2,409 MW of nameplate generating capacity

Net Excess Generation
Net excess generation (NEG) is carried forward to a customer’s next bill. Under prior law, any NEG remaining at the end of each 12-month period was granted to the customer’s utility. AB 920 of 2009 gave customers two additional options for the NEG remaining after a 12 month period. Customers have the option of rolling over any remaining NEG from month-to-month indefinitely, or they can receive financial compensation from their utility for the remaining NEG. The CPUC set the compensation rate at the 12-month average spot market price for the hours of 7 am to 5 pm for the year in which the surplus power was generated. The rate making authorities of municipal utilities must develop their own compensation method for the remaining NEG through a public proceeding.

Renewable Energy Credits
The renewable energy credits (RECs) associated with the electricity produced and used on-site remain with the customer-generator. If, however, the customer chooses to receive financial compensation for the NEG remaining after a 12 month period, the utility will be granted the RECs associated with just that surplus they purchase.

Virtual Metering Options
AB 2466 of 2008 allows a local government, if certain conditions are met, to distribute bill credits from a renewable energy system across more than one meter. To be eligible for this billing arrangement all electrical accounts involved must receive electricity under a time-of-use tariff, and all accounts must be owned by the same entity.

California also allows virtual net metering for certain utility customers.  Originally authorized just for customers participating in the Multifamily Affordable Solar Housing (MASH) program, the CPUC voted in July 2011 in favor of a proposed decision which extends virtual net metering to all multi-tenant properties and to all distributed generation technologies. Virtual net metering allows the bill credits associated with the electricity produced by the system to be distributed across all the tenants’ electricity bills.

Meter Aggregation
SB 594 of 2012 allowed for the possibility of meter aggregation under net metering pending a favorable determination by the CPUC and the ratemaking authorities of publicly-owned utilities. A publicly-owned utility must make this determination with 180 days of receiving the first request from a customer to aggregate their meters. The CPUC considered meter aggregation and approved it with Resolution E-4610. A single customer with multiple meters on contiguous property may elect to aggregate the electrical load of their meters and apply the generation credits of a renewable energy system also located on contiguous property to all of the meters.

Restriction on Additional Fees
California does not allow any new or additional demand charges, standby charges, customer charges, minimum monthly charges, interconnection charges, or other charges that would increase an eligible customer-generator’s costs beyond those of other customers in the rate class to which the eligible customer-generator would otherwise be assigned. The CPUC has explicitly ruled that technologies eligible for net metering (up to 1 MW) are exempt from interconnection application fees, as well as from initial and supplemental interconnection review fees.

Publicly owned utilities may elect to provide co-energy metering, which is the same as net-metering, but incorporates a time-of-use rate schedule. Customer-generators with systems sized between 10 kW and 1 MW who are subject to time-of-use rates are entitled to deliver electricity back to the system for the same time-of-use (including real-time) price that they pay for power purchases. However, time-of-use customers who choose to co-energy meter must pay for the metering equipment capable of making such measurements. Customer-generators retain ownership of all renewable-energy credits (RECs) associated with the generation of electricity they use on site.

Energy Storage (IOUs Only)
California allows renewable energy systems coupled with energy storage to qualify for net metering. A chief concern when introducing storage to net metering is the risk that a customer would store grid electricity during times when electricity costs are low and export that same grid electricity during times when electricity costs are high. The CPUC developed rules to address this and other concerns. The CPUC developed different rules for PV systems paired with storage devices 10 kW or less, and PV systems paired with storage devices larger than 10 kW or other forms of renewable energy paired with storage of any size.

PV systems paired with storage devices larger than 10 kW and non-PV renewable energy technologies paired with storage of any size: 
The CPUC issued a decision in May 2014 establishing rules for net metering systems paired with storage devices larger than 10 kW. In addition to other requirements, these systems must : 1) install a non-export relay on the storage device(s); 2) install an interval meter for the NEM-eligible generation, meter the load, and meter total energy flows at the point of common coupling; or 3) install an interval meter directly to the NEM-eligible generator(s). While these rules originally applied only to systems paired with storage larger than 10 kW, a subsequent CPUC decision extended these requirements to all non-PV technologies paired with storage of any size.

PV systems paired with storage devices 10 kW or less
The CPUC issued a decision in April 2016 establishing rules for net metering PV systems paired with storage 10 kW or less. Rather than installing the extra equipment required for storage devices greater than 10 kW, the rules for PV systems paired with smaller storage protects against rate arbitrage by relying on system output estimations. Specifically,  utilities are required to establish monthly maximum allowable output limits for net metering facilities using CPUC-approved tools. Any export by the customer’s system which exceeds the monthly limit would not be eligible for net metering credits.

 

Net Metering Successor Tariff (Future)

AB 327 of 2013 tasked the CPUC with designing a standard contract or tariff to be used by eligible customer-generators in the service territory of one of the investor-owned utilities once net metering is no longer available. According to the law, as described above, the investor-owned utilities must make net metering available until that utility reaches its net metering program capacity limit or July 1, 2017, whichever comes first. At that point, the utility must make available to new customer-generators the standard contract or tariff developed by the CPUC. The CPUC was given broad authority to develop this standard contract or tariff, but AB 327 provided some general parameters regarding costs and benefits to customer-generators and the electrical system. The bill also allows for a period of transition, the length of which would be determined by the CPUC, during which time existing net metering customers can continue to net meter under the old rules.

In January 2016, the California Public Utilities Commission issued a decision on its net metering successor tariff. Customers on the new net metering successor tariff will have to pay an interconnection fee, estimated at $75-$150; pay all non-bypassable charges for all electricity consumed from the grid (~$0.02-0.03/kWh); and go on a time-of-use rate. The net metering successor tariff will take effect for California’s three large investor-owned utilities (IOU) on July 1, 2017, or when 5% of the sum of non-coincident customer peak demand is reached for the IOU, which translates to an installed net-metered capacity of 2,409 MW for Pacific Gas and Electric, 2,240 MW for Southern California Edison, and 617 MW for San Diego Gas and Electric.

Click here to read more about the CPUC’s efforts to create a customer-generator successor tariff or contract.

Additional Resources:

* Publicly-owned electric utilities with more than 750,000 customers which also provide water are exempt from offering net metering. Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) is the only utility that falls in this category.

Authorities

    • Date Enacted:
      1995 (subsequently amended)

    • Effective Date:
      1/1/1996

    • Date Enacted:
      9/28/2008

Contact

Memos

Loading…

    • 05/12/2016 by Brian Lips

      A recent CPUC decision established rules for net metering PV systems coupled with energy storage 10 kW or less. This is in addition to existing rules for net metering PV systems coupled with energy storage larger than 10 kW, or non-PV renewable energy systems coupled with storage of any size.

    • 02/01/2016 by Ben Inskeep

      In January 2016, the California Public Utilities Commission issued a ruling on its net metering success tariff. Customers on the new net metering successor tariff will have to pay an interconnection fee, estimated at $75-$150; pay all non-bypassable charges for all electricity consumed from the grid (~$0.02-0.03/kWh); and go on a time-of-use rate. The net metering successor tariff will take effect for California’s three large investor-owned utilities (IOU) on July 1, 2017, or when 5% of the sum of non-coincident customer peak demand is reached for the IOU, with translates to an installed net-metered capacity of 2,409 MW for Pacific Gas and Electric, 2,240 MW for Southern California Edison, and 617 MW for San Diego Gas and Electric.

  • 08/28/2015 by Brian Lips

    Clarified that the CPUC definition of aggregate customer peak demand applies only to the investor-owned utilities.

Net Metering in Wyoming

Net Metering

Only 30 ft tall kicks in at 6mph and at 12mph produces 36kw enough to power 30 average homes

Last Updated December 1, 2015

Program Overview

    • Implementing Sector:

      State

    • Category:

      Regulatory Policy

    • State:

      Wyoming

    • Incentive Type:

      Net Metering

    • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

      Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Hydroelectric, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small)

    • Applicable Sectors:

      Commercial, Industrial, Residential, Federal Government, Low Income Residential

    • Applicable Utilities:

      Investor-owned utilities, electric cooperatives, irrigation districts

    • System Capacity Limit:

      25 kW

    • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

      No limit specified

    • Net Excess Generation:

      Credited to customer’s next bill as a kWh credit; excess reconciled annually at seasonal avoided-cost rate

    • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

      Not addressed

    • Meter Aggregation:

      Not addressed

Summary

Wyoming enacted legislation in February 2001 that established statewide net metering. The law applies to investor-owned utilities, electric cooperatives and irrigation districts. Eligible technologies include solar, wind, biomass and hydropower systems up to 25 kilowatts (kW) in capacity. Systems must be intended primarily to offset part or all of the customer-generator’s requirements for electricity.

Net excess generation (NEG) is treated as a kilowatt-hour (kWh) credit or other compensation on the customer’s following bill.* At the beginning of the calendar year, a utility will purchase any unused credits at the utility’s avoided-cost rate. Utilities may not charge net-metered customers any additional fees beyond the minimum monthly charges that apply to other (non-net-metered) utility customers in the same rate class.

Systems must meet NEC, IEEE and UL technical standards. In addition, system owners must install a manual, lockable external disconnect switch and are responsible for all costs related to any modifications to the systems that may be required by the electric utility for purposes of safety and reliability. The Wyoming Public Service Commission (PSC) is authorized to adopt additional control and testing requirements deemed necessary to protect public safety and system reliability.

* The latter “compensation” option has apparently been interpreted by the PSC to give utilities the freedom to apply rates other than the retail rate to monthly NEG. For instance, the Wyrulec Co. net metering tariff approved by the PSC in April 2008 applies the avoided-cost rate to monthly NEG to arrive at a monetary credit that is applied to the customer’s next bill. Other utilities such as Rocky Mountain Power (see tariff) credit monthly NEG as a kWh credit, which equates to the full retail rate.

Authorities

    • Date Enacted:
      02/22/2001 (amended 2003)

    • Effective Date:
      07/01/2001

Contact

  • Christopher Petrie

  • Organization:

    Wyoming Public Service Commission

  • Address:

    700 West 1st Street
    Cheyenne, WY 82002

  • Phone:

    (307) 777-7427

  • E-Mail:

Net Metering in Oregon

Net Metering

Only 30 ft tall kicks in at 6mph and at 12mph produces 36kw enough to power 30 average homes

Last Updated October 26, 2016

Program Overview

    • Implementing Sector:

      State

    • Category:

      Regulatory Policy

    • State:

      Oregon

    • Incentive Type:

      Net Metering

    • Utilities:

      City of Ashland, City of Bandon, Blachly-Lane Cnty Coop El Assn, Canby Utility Board, City of Cascade Locks, Central Electric Coop Inc, Central Lincoln People’s Ut Dt, Clearwater Power Company, Columbia Basin Elec Cooperative, Inc, Columbia Power Coop Assn Inc, Columbia Rural Elec Assn, Inc, Coos-Curry Electric Coop, Inc, Consumers Power, Inc, Douglas Electric Coop, Inc, City of Drain, Eugene City of, City of Forest Grove, City of Hermiston, Hood River Electric Coop, Lane Electric Coop Inc, Harney Electric Coop, Inc, McMinnville City of, Midstate Electric Coop, Inc, City of Milton-Freewater, City of Monmouth, Northern Wasco County PUD, Oregon Trail El Cons Coop, Inc, PacifiCorp, Portland General Electric Co, Salem Electric, City of Springfield, Surprise Valley Electrification Corp., Tillamook Peoples Utility Dist, Umatilla Electric Coop Assn, Wasco Electric Coop, Inc, West Oregon Electric Coop Inc, Clatskanie Peoples Util Dist, Emerald People’s Utility Dist, Columbia River Peoples Ut Dist

    • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

      Geothermal Electric, Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Hydroelectric, Fuel Cells using Non-Renewable Fuels, Landfill Gas, Tidal, Wave, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small), Anaerobic Digestion, Fuel Cells using Renewable Fuels

    • Applicable Sectors:

      Commercial, Industrial, Local Government, Nonprofit, Residential, Schools, State Government, Federal Government, Agricultural, Institutional

    • Applicable Utilities:

      All utilities (except Idaho Power)

    • System Capacity Limit:

      PGE and PacifiCorp customers: 2 MW for non-residential
      25 kW for residential
      Muni, co-op and PUD customers: 25 kW for all customers

    • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

      Discretionary cap: 0.5% of utility’s historic single-hour peak load

    • Net Excess Generation:

      Credited to customer’s next bill at retail rate for IOU customers
      Varies for muni, co-op and PUD customers

    • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

      Customer owns RECs (unless Energy Trust subsidizes system)

    • Meter Aggregation:

      Allowed

Summary

Eligibility and Availability

Oregon state law requires all utilities to offer net metering pursuant to Oregon Revised Statutes 757.300.* Some requirements differ between the state’s primary investor-owned utilities (PGE and PacifiCorp) and its municipal utilities, electric cooperatives, and people’s utility districts.

Net-metered systems must be intended primarily to offset part or all of a customer’s requirements for electricity. Systems that generate electricity using solar power, wind power, hydropower, fuel cells, landfill or digester gas, biomass resources, geothermal energy, or marine energy are eligible.

The Public Utilities Commission (PUC) adopted new rules for net metering for PGE and PacifiCorp customers in July 2007, raising the individual system limit from 25 kilowatts (kW) to two megawatts (MW) for non-residential applications. The limit on individual residential systems is 25 kW. The system size limit for municipal utilities, electric cooperatives, and people’s utility districts is 25 kW.

Net Excess Generation

For PGE and PacifiCorp customers, net excess generation (NEG) is carried over to the customer’s next bill as a kilowatt-hour credit for a 12-month period. Unless the utility and a customer otherwise agree, the annual billing cycle will conclude at the end of the March billing cycle of each year. Any NEG remaining at the end of a 12-month period will be credited at the utility’s avoided-cost rate to customers enrolled in Oregon’s low-income assistance programs.

For customers of municipal utilities, cooperatives, and people’s utility districts, NEG is either purchased at the utility’s avoided-cost rate or credited to the customer’s next monthly bill as a kilowatt-hour credit. At the end of an annual period, any unused NEG credit is granted to the electric utility. This credit, in turn, is then either granted to customers enrolled in the utility’s low-income assistance programs, credited to the generating customer, or dedicated to “other use.”

Aggregate Capacity Limit

Utilities may not limit the total cumulative capacity of net metered systems beyond a cumulative capacity of 0.5% of the utility’s historic peak load. After the cap is reached, the PUC, or the governing body if a municipal utility, electric cooperative, or people’s utility district, has the discretion to limit net metering IF deemed necessary. The PUC thus far has not implemented the 0.5% cap for the state’s two IOUs.

Equipment and Interconnection

Net metering is achieved using a standard bi-directional meter. Utilities may not place any additional standards or requirements on customers beyond those requirements established by the National Electric Code (NEC), National Electrical Safety Code (NESC), Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), and Underwriters Laboratories (UL). However, utilities may be authorized to assess a fee or charge if the utility’s direct costs of interconnection and administration of net metering outweigh the distribution system, environmental and public-policy benefits of allocating costs among its customers.

Meter Aggregation

For customers of PGE and PacifiCorp, the aggregation of meters for net metering is allowed. There is no limit on the number of net-metering facilities per customer, as long as the capacity of all net-metering facilities on a customer’s contiguous property does not exceed the applicable capacity limit. Meters that are on different rate schedules are able to be aggregated.

Community Net Metering

SB 1547 of 2016 established a community solar program for Oregon. The law requires that utilities compensate subscribers to a community solar program for the electricity the system produces according to the resource value of solar. The PUC is delegated authority to determine the resource value of solar and establish specific rules and requirements for community solar programs.

Third Party Ownership

In July of 2008, the PUC issued a ruling to clarify that third-party investors may participate in net metering, and that a third-party investor’s sale of electricity to a utility customer does not subject the investor to regulation by the commission.

Renewable Energy Credits

Customers retain ownership of all renewable-energy credits (RECs) associated with the generation of electricity.

*Oregon’s net metering rules do not apply to customers of Idaho Power, which provides net metering to Oregon customers pursuant to rules adopted by the Idaho Public Utilities Commission.

Authorities

    • Date Enacted:
      9/1/1999; amended, 6/7/2005

    • Effective Date:
      11/30/2005

    • Date Enacted:
      7/24/2007

    • Effective Date:
      7/24/2007

    • Effective Date:
      03/15/2016

Contact

  • John Crider

  • Organization:

    Oregon Public Utilities Commission

  • Phone:

    (503) 373-1536

  • E-Mail:

Memos

Loading…

    • 10/26/2016 by Kate Daniel

      Annual review. SB 1547 of 2016 established community solar requirements.

  • 12/01/2015 by Kate Daniel

    Annual review. No policy changes.

Net Metering in Idaho

Rocky Mountain Power – Net Metering

Last Updated October 27, 2016

Only 30 ft tall kicks in at 6mph and at 12mph produces 36kw enough to power 30 average homes

Program Overview

    • Implementing Sector:

      Utility

    • Category:

      Regulatory Policy

    • State:

      Idaho

    • Incentive Type:

      Net Metering

    • Utilities:

      PacifiCorp

    • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

      Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Hydroelectric, Fuel Cells using Non-Renewable Fuels, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small), Fuel Cells using Renewable Fuels

    • Applicable Sectors:

      Commercial, Industrial, Local Government, Nonprofit, Residential, Schools, State Government, Federal Government, Agricultural, Institutional

    • Applicable Utilities:

      Rocky Mountain Power

    • System Capacity Limit:

      100 kW for non-residential; 25 kW for residential and small commercial

    • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

      None

    • Net Excess Generation:

      Credited to customer’s next bill at retail rate for residential and small commercial customers; credited at 85% of non-firm energy rate for all others

    • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

      Not addressed

    • Meter Aggregation:

      Not addressed

Summary

Idaho does not have a statewide net-metering policy. However, each of the state’s three investor-owned utilities — Avista Utilities, Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power — has a net-metering tariff on file with the Idaho Public Utilities Commission (PUC). The framework of the utilities’ net-metering programs is similar, in that each utility’s original program: (1) offers net metering to customers that generate electricity using solar, wind, hydropower, biomass or fuel cells; (2) limits net metering to 0.1% of its retail peak demand in a baseline year (2002 for Rocky Mountain Power); (3) limits residential systems to 25 kilowatts; and (4) restricts any single customer from generating more than 20% of such peak production.* Rocky Mountain Power’s net-metering tariff is Schedule 135.

In an April 2016 order, the PUC removed both the system-wide capacity cap of 0.1% of peak demand, and the individual capacity cap of 20% of the customer’s peak production. Rocky Mountain Power must submit annual reports to the PUC on net metering participation.

For residential and small commercial customers, net excess generation (NEG) is credited at Rocky Mountain Power’s retail rate and carried forward to the next month. For larger commercial and agricultural customers, NEG is credited at 85% of the monthly weighted average of the daily on-peak and off-peak Dow Jones Mid-C Index prices for non-firm energy and carried forward to the next month.

 

*Note: In 2013, Idaho Power made a request to the PUC to modify its net metering program, resulting in changes to the capacity cap and net excess generation. 

Contact

Memos

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  • 10/27/2016 by Kate Daniel

    Annual review. Aggregate cap and individual cap based on peak load were removed in April.

    Avista Utilities – Net Metering

    Last Updated October 27, 2016

    Program Overview

      • Implementing Sector:

        Utility

      • Category:

        Regulatory Policy

      • State:

        Idaho

      • Incentive Type:

        Net Metering

      • Utilities:

        Avista Corp

      • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

        Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Hydroelectric, Fuel Cells using Non-Renewable Fuels, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small), Fuel Cells using Renewable Fuels

      • Applicable Sectors:

        Commercial, Industrial, Residential, Federal Government, Agricultural

      • Applicable Utilities:

        Avista Utilities

      • System Capacity Limit:

        100 kW

      • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

        0.1% of Avista’s peak demand in 1996 (in Idaho)

      • Net Excess Generation:

        Credited to customer’s next bill; granted to utility at end of 12-month billing cycle

      • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

        Not addressed

      • Meter Aggregation:

        Not addressed

    Summary

    Idaho does not have a statewide net-metering policy. However, each of the state’s three investor-owned utilities — Avista Utilities, Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power — has developed a net-metering tariff that has been approved by the Idaho Public Utilities Commission (PUC). The framework of the utilities’ net-metering programs is similar, in that each utility’s original program: (1) offers net metering to customers that generate electricity using solar, wind, hydropower, biomass or fuel cells; (2) limits individual system size to 100 kilowatts (kW); (3) limits aggregate net-metered capacity to 0.1% of the utility’s peak demand in a baseline year (1996 for Avista); and (4) restricts any single customer from generating more than 20% of the aggregate capacity of all net-metered systems.* Avista Utilities’ net-metering tariff is Schedule 63. Previously, Avista had an individual system size cap of 25 kW. In July 2010, the PUC approved an increase in this cap to allow systems up to 100 kW to participate in net metering.

    For Avista Utilities customers, any net excess generation (NEG) during a monthly billing period is credited to the customer’s next bill at the utility’s retail rate. At the beginning of each calendar year, any remaining NEG is granted to the utility with no compensation for the customer.

     

    *Note: In 2013, Idaho Power made a request to the PUC to modify its net metering program, resulting in changes to the capacity cap and net excess generation. 

    Contact

    Memos

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    • 10/27/2016 by Kate Daniel

      Annual review. No changes to policy.

      Idaho Power – Net Metering

      Last Updated October 27, 2016

      Program Overview

        • Implementing Sector:

          Utility

        • Category:

          Regulatory Policy

        • State:

          Idaho

        • Incentive Type:

          Net Metering

        • Utilities:

          Idaho Power Co

        • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

          Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Biomass, Hydroelectric, Fuel Cells using Non-Renewable Fuels, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small), Fuel Cells using Renewable Fuels

        • Applicable Sectors:

          Commercial, Industrial, Residential, Federal Government, Agricultural

        • Applicable Utilities:

          Idaho Power

        • System Capacity Limit:

          25 kW for residential and small commercial
          100 kW for all others

        • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

          None

        • Net Excess Generation:

          Credited to customer’s next bill as a per kWh credit. Carried forward indefinitely.

        • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

          Customer

        • Meter Aggregation:

          Allowed

      Summary

      Idaho does not have a statewide net-metering policy. However, each of the state’s three investor-owned utilities — Avista Utilities, Idaho Power and Rocky Mountain Power — has developed a net-metering tariff that has been approved by the Idaho Public Utilities Commission (PUC). Idaho Power’s net-metering tariff is Schedule 84. Systems owned or operated by residential and small general service customers must be 25 kW or smaller to participate in net metering. Large general service, large power service, and agriculture irrigation service customers may own or operate a system up to 100 kW to participate.

      In July 2013, the PUC issued an order in response to Idaho Power’s application to modify its net metering program. The ruling removed a previously existing service capacity cap of 2.9 MW and changed compensation for net excess generation to a kilowatt hour (kWh) credit that may be carried forward indefinitely. It also rejected Idaho Power’s proposal to move residential and small commercial customers to new service tariffs with increased monthly service charges and new basic load capacity charges. The net excess generation changes took effect in January of 2014.

      In a supplemental order issued in November, 2013, the PUC required Idaho Power to provide meter aggregation for net metered customers with multiple meters on the same property or property contiguous to the net metered system. To transfer credits between meters, all eligible meters must be on the same primary feeder, must be a similar rate class, and must be under the same name or financial responsibility. A meter aggregation fee of $10 applies.

      Under Idaho Power’s net-metering tariff, the customer is responsible for “all costs associated with any [utility] additions, modifications, or upgrades to any [utility] facilities that the [utility] determines are necessary as a result of the installation of the [generator] in order to maintain a safe, reliable electrical system.”

      Contact

      Memos

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      • 10/27/2016 by Kate Daniel

        Annual review. No changes to policy.

Net Metering in Colorado

Net Metering

Only 30 ft tall kicks in at 6mph and at 12mph produces 36kw enough to power 30 average homes

Last Updated August 27, 2015

Program Overview

    • Implementing Sector:

      State

    • Category:

      Regulatory Policy

    • State:

      Colorado

    • Incentive Type:

      Net Metering

    • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

      Geothermal Electric, Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Hydroelectric, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small), Fuel Cells using Renewable Fuels

    • Applicable Sectors:

      Commercial, Industrial, Local Government, Nonprofit, Residential, Schools, State Government, Low Income Residential, Institutional

    • Applicable Utilities:

      All utilities (except municipal utilities with less than 5,000 customers)

    • System Capacity Limit:

      IOU customers: 120% of the customer’s average annual consumption.
      Municipality and co-op customers: 25 kW for non-residential; 10 kW for residential.

    • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

      No limit specified
      Community solar gardens: 6 MW/yr for 2011-2013; set by PUC thereafter

    • Net Excess Generation:

      Credited to customer’s next bill at retail rate. After 12-month cycle, IOU customers may opt to roll over credit indefinitely or to receive payment at IOU’s average hourly incremental cost. Municipality and co-ops provide annual reconciliation at a rate they deem appropriate.

    • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

      Customer owns RECs

    • Meter Aggregation:

      Allowed for IOU customers
      Community solar gardens are allowed

Summary

Note: In March 2014, the Public Utilities Commission opened a miscellaneous proceeding (14M-0235E) to consider issues of retail renewable distributed generation and net metering. In August 2015, the Commission voted to maintain the current net metering rules and close the docket.

NET METERING

Eligibility and Availability

In December 2005 the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC) adopted standards for net metering and interconnection, as required by Amendment 37, a renewable energy ballot initiative approved by Colorado voters in November 2004.

Customer-generators are eligible for net metering in Colorado for retail renewable distributed generation. The following sections describe the rules that apply to investor-owned utilities (IOUs), with last section detailing net metering for municipal utilities and electric cooperatives. All utilities subject to the below net metering rules are required to provide net metering service at non-discriminatory rates to customer-generators.

Systems sized up to 120% of the customer’s annual average consumption that generate electricity using qualifying renewable energy resources are eligible for net metering in IOU service territories.

If a customer-generator does not own a single bi-directional meter, then the utility must provide one free of charge. Systems over 10 kilowatts (kW) in capacity require a second meter to measure the output for the counting of renewable energy credits (RECs).

Net Excess Generation

Any customer’s net excess generation (NEG) in a given month is applied as a kilowatt-hour (kWh) credit to the customer’s next bill, with each kWh credit of NEG off-setting 1 kWh of electricity consumption in a future month. If in a calendar year a customer’s generation exceeds consumption, or if the customer-generator terminates its retail service, the utility must reimburse the customer for the NEG at the utility’s average hourly incremental cost over the most recent calendar year.

Net metering customers may make a one-time election in writing on or before the end of the calendar year to have their NEG carried forward from month-to-month indefinitely. If the customer chooses this option, they will surrender all their kWh credits when they terminate service with their utility.

Renewable Energy Credits

The customer-generator retains ownership of any RECs associated with the energy generated by the customer-generator’s system. A utility may acquire the RECs by purchasing them from the customer-generator through a standard offer. All contracts for RECs for solar electric technologies located on site at customer facilities are required to have a minimum term of 20 years if the system is under 100 kW.

Meter Aggregation

A single customer with multiple meters located on contiguous property may elect to have their generator offset the load measured at more than one meter, a policy commonly referred to as “meter aggregation.” A customer who wants to aggregate their meters under net metering must give the utility a 30-day notice and specify the order in which they want their kWh credits applied to the multiple meters. All affected meters must be on the same rate schedule.

Municipal Utilities and Electric Cooperatives

Colorado enacted legislation in March 2008 requiring municipal utilities with more than 5,000 customers and all electric cooperatives to offer net metering for residential systems up to 10 kW and commercial and industrial systems up to 25 kW (see H.B. 1160). Electric cooperatives and municipal utilities are authorized to exceed these minimum size standards.

Any customer’s NEG in a given month is applied as a kWh credit to the customer’s next bill, with each kWh credit of NEG off-setting 1 kWh of electricity consumption in a future month. Electric cooperatives and municipal utilities are required to pay for any remaining NEG at the end of an annual period based on a “rate deemed appropriate” by the electric cooperative or municipal utility.

COMMUNITY SOLAR GARDENS

Eligibility and Availability

In 2010 Colorado enacted the Community Solar Gardens Act, allowing for the creation of “community solar gardens” (CSGs) with a nameplate capacity of up to 2 megawatts in the service territory of an IOU (see H.B. 1342). In 2015, Colorado enacted H.B. 15-1377, which specified that CSGs could be located in the service territory of an electric cooperative and used to comply with the retail distributed generation requirements of Colorado’s Renewable Energy Standard.

A CSG may be owned by the utility itself or any other for-profit or nonprofit entity or organization and must have at least 10 subscribers (or 4 subscribers if in the territory of an electric cooperative and the system size is less than 50 kW). The subscribers may purchase a portion (up to 40%) of the power produced by the array and receive kWh credits on their utility bills in proportion to the size of their subscription. CSG subscriptions must be for at least 1 kW (unless owned by a low-income CSG subscriber) and a supply no more than 120% of the subscriber’s annual electricity consumption.

Pursuant to H.B. 15-1284 enacted May 2015, subscribers must be located in the service territory of the same qualifying retail utility and also in the same county as, or a county adjacent to, that of the community solar garden.

Net Excess Generation

If, in a monthly billing period, the CSG subscriber’s billing credit associated with a CSG subscription exceeds the customer’s bill from the IOU, the excess billing credit will be rolled over as a credit from month-to-month indefinitely until the customer terminates service with the IOU, at which time any remaining billing credits expire.

Aggregate Cap

For compliance years 2011-2013, IOUs were only required to purchase up to 6 MW of new CSGs. For compliance years 2014 and thereafter, the PUC will set minimum and maximum purchases of renewable energy and RECs from new CSGs of different segments based on the capacity of the CSGs. Beginning in the 2015 compliance year, IOUs plan for acquisition of renewable energy from CSGs will be part of its renewable portfolio standard compliance plan. At least 5% of an IOU’s purchases from CSGs must be reserved for low-income CSG subscribers.

Authorities

    • Date Enacted:
      12/15/2005

    • Effective Date:
      7/2/2006

    • Date Enacted:
      6/5/2010

    • Effective Date:
      6/5/2010

    • Date Enacted:
      05/08/2015

    • Effective Date:
      05/08/2015

    • Date Enacted:
      05/19/2015

    • Effective Date:
      08/05/2015

Contact

Memos

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    • 08/27/2015 by Ben Inskeep

      In August 2015, the Colorado Public Utilities Commission voted to maintain current net metering rules and close the docket examining the issue.

    • 08/25/2015 by Ben Inskeep

      In May 2015, Colorado enacted H.B. 15-1377, which specified that CSGs could be located in the service territory of an electric cooperative and used to comply with the retail distributed generation requirements of Colorado’s Renewable Energy Standard.

  • 06/01/2015 by Ben Inskeep

    Enacted May 2015, H.B. 15-1284 changed the definition of a community solar garden subscriber.

Net Metering in Hawaii

Net Metering

Only 30 ft tall kicks in at 6mph and at 12mph produces 36kw enough to power 30 average homes

Last Updated October 21, 2015

Program Overview

    • Implementing Sector:

      State

    • Category:

      Regulatory Policy

    • State:

      Hawaii

    • Incentive Type:

      Net Metering

    • Utilities:

      Hawaii Electric Light Co Inc, Kauai Island Utility Cooperative, Maui Electric Co Ltd, Hawaiian Electric Co Inc

    • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

      Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Hydroelectric, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small)

    • Applicable Sectors:

      Commercial, Local Government, Residential, State Government, Federal Government

    • Applicable Utilities:

      All utilities

    • System Capacity Limit:

      100 kW for HECO, MECO, HELCO customers; 50 kW for KIUC customers

    • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

      15% per circuit distribution threshold for distributed generation penetration

    • Net Excess Generation:

      Credited to customer’s next bill at retail rate; granted to utility at end of 12-month billing cycle

    • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

      Not addressed

    • Meter Aggregation:

      Virtual net metering tariffs due October 15, 2015

Summary

Note: On October 12th, 2015 the Hawaii PUC voted to end net metering in favor of 3 alternative options: a grid supply option, a self-supply option, and a time of use tariff. Customers with net energy metering application submitted before October 12th will have the option of continuing with net metering described below.

Community renewable energy tariffs have been proposed by Hawaiian utilities pursuant to SB 1050 and are currently being reviewed.

Eligibility and Availability

Net metering is available on a first-come, first-served basis to residential and “small commercial” customers (including government entities) that generate electricity using solar, wind, biomass or hydro-electric systems. Third-party owned and operated systems are eligible to participate in net metering (leased systems and systems with a third-party power purchase agreements can participate in net metering). Under the terms of the March 2008 and December 2008 PUC orders, Hawaii’s three investor-owned utilities (HECO, HELCO and MECO) and sole electric cooperative (KIUC) have slightly different programs:

For customers of Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO), the maximum individual system capacity is 100 kW. The aggregate capacity of net-metered systems is limited on a per-circuit basis to 15% per circuit distribution threshold for distributed generation penetration. Of this 15% in peak circuit demand capacity, 5% (or 0.75% of overall peak circuit demand capacity) will be reserved for residential or small commercial systems that are 10 kW or smaller.

For customers of Hawaii Electric Light Company (HELCO) and Maui Electric Company (MECO), which are both subsidiaries of HECO, the maximum individual system capacity is 100 kW. The aggregate capacity of net-metered systems is limited on a per-circuit basis to 15% per circuit distribution threshold for distributed generation penetration. Of this 15% in peak circuit demand capacity, 5% (or 0.75% of overall peak circuit demand capacity) will be reserved for residential or small commercial systems that are 10 kW or smaller.

For customers of Kauai Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC), the maximum individual system capacity is 50 kW. The aggregate capacity of net-metered systems is limited to 1% of KIUC’s peak demand. Of this 1% limit, 50% is reserved for systems 10 kW or smaller.

Net Excess Generation

The March 2008 PUC order also required each utility to develop a pilot program allowing net metering to a limited number of systems 100 kW to 500 kW in capacity, while allowing for even larger systems “if technically and economically reasonable and practicable.” KIUC currently has a pilot net metering program for systems up to 200 kW. Under the pilot program, customer-generators will be paid $0.20 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) for a system’s net excess generation at the end of each year. Participants can receive this payment for net excess generation for a 20 year term.

A customer whose system produces more electricity than the customer consumes during the month may carry forward NEG in the form of a kilowatt-hour (kWh) credit that is applied to the customer’s next bill. NEG may be carried over for a maximum of 12 months. At the end of the 12-month period, any remaining customer NEG credits are surrendered to the utility without compensation (unless the customer enters into a purchase agreement with the utility).

Virtual Net Metering/Community Solar

SB 1050 mandates that utilities propose community renewable energy tariffs by October 1st, 2015. The tariffs must:

  • Allow an electric utility customer to participate in an eligible project
  • Be designed to provide fair compensation for electricity, electric grid services, and other benefits provided to or by the electric utility, participating ratepayers, and non-participating ratepayers
  • Allow the electric utility to implement a billing arrangement to compensate customers for electricity and grid services
  • Standardize and streamline interconnection processes for community-based renewable energy projects.

Any entity with an eligible facility that meets compliance requirements can become subject to a community renewable energy tariff.

History

Hawaii’s original net-metering law was enacted in 2001 and expanded in 2004 by HB 2048, which increased the eligible capacity limit of net-metered systems from 10 kilowatts (kW) to 50 kW. In 2005, the law was further amended by SB 1003, which authorized the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to increase certain limits outlined in the law and provided for the carryover of net excess generation (NEG) to the customer’s next bill. In March 2008, the PUC issued an order to implement SB 1003. This order generally raised both the individual system capacity limit and the aggregate capacity limit for net-metered systems. In October 2008, Hawaii’s governor; the Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism; the Hawaii consumer advocate, and the HECO companies entered into an energy agreement, a product of the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative. This agreement provides that there should be no system-wide caps on net metering, and that net metering should transition towards a feed-in-tariff. In December 2008, the PUC issued an order to raise the aggregate capacity limit for net-metered systems in the service territories of HELCO and MECO. In January 2011, the PUC issued an order approving changes to Kauai’s program, which was full, and the aggregate capacity limits for HECO companies were lifted and are now based on per-circuit caps rather than a percentage of peak demand.

Authorities

    • Date Enacted:
      6/25/2001 (subsequently amended)

    • Date Enacted:
      1/13/2011

    • Date Enacted:
      06/08/2015

Contact

Memos

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  • 06/10/2015 by Ethan Case

    New community renewable energy tariff mandated by law and expected in October 2015.

Net Metering in Washington

Net Metering

Only 30 ft tall kicks in at 6mph and at 12mph produces 36kw enough to power 30 average homes

Last Updated December 1, 2015

Program Overview

    • Implementing Sector:

      State

    • Category:

      Regulatory Policy

    • State:

      Washington

    • Incentive Type:

      Net Metering

    • Utilities:

      Alder Mutual Light Co, Inc, PUD No 1 of Benton County, Benton Rural Electric Assn, Big Bend Electric Coop, Inc, City of Blaine, City of Centralia, PUD No 1 of Chelan County, City of Cheney, City of Chewelah, PUD No 1 of Clallam County, PUD No 1 of Clark County, Clearwater Power Company, Columbia Rural Elec Assn, Inc, City of Coulee Dam, PUD No 1 of Cowlitz County, PUD No 1 of Douglas County, City of East Point, Town of Eatonville, Elmhurst Mutual Power & Light Co, City of Ellensburg, PUD No 1 of Ferry County, PUD No 1 of Franklin County, PUD No 1 of Grays Harbor Cnty, Inland Power & Light Company, PUD No 1 of Kittitas County, PUD No 1 of Klickitat County, Kootenai Electric Coop Inc, Lakeview Light & Power, PUD No 1 of Lewis County, City of McCleary, City of Milton, Modern Electric Water Company, Nespelem Valley Elec Coop, Inc, Northern Lights, Inc, Ohop Mutual Light Company, Inc, PUD No 1 of Okanogan County, Okanogan County Elec Coop, Inc, Orcas Power & Light Coop, Public Utility District No 2, PacifiCorp, Parkland Light & Water Company, PUD No 2 of Grant County, PUD No 1 of Pend Oreille Cnty, Peninsula Light Company, PUD No 1 of Asotin County, Port Angeles City of, Public Utility District No 1, PUD No 3 of Mason County, Puget Sound Energy Inc, City of Richland, Town of Ruston, Seattle City of, PUD No 1 of Skamania Co, Snohomish County PUD No 1, Town of Steilacoom, City of Sumas, Tacoma City of, Tanner Electric Coop, Vera Irrigation District #15, Avista Corp, PUD No 1 of Mason County, PUD No 1 of Whatcom County, Cashmere Light Dept.

    • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

      Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Hydroelectric, Combined Heat & Power, Fuel Cells using Non-Renewable Fuels, Wind (Small), Hydroelectric (Small), Fuel Cells using Renewable Fuels

    • Applicable Sectors:

      Commercial, Industrial, Local Government, Nonprofit, Residential, Schools, State Government, Federal Government, Low Income Residential, Institutional

    • Applicable Utilities:

      All utilities

    • System Capacity Limit:

      100 kW

    • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

      0.5% of utility’s 1996 peak demand

    • Net Excess Generation:

      Credited to customer’s next bill at retail rate; granted to utility at end of 12-month billing period

    • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

      Not specified

    • Meter Aggregation:

      Allowed (up to 100 kW)

Summary

Washington’s net-metering law applies to systems up to 100 kilowatts (kW) in capacity that generate electricity using solar, wind, hydro, biogas from animal waste, fuel cells, or combined heat and power technologies. All customer classes are eligible, and all utilities — including municipal utilities and electric cooperatives — must offer net metering.

Net metering is available on a first-come, first-served basis until the cumulative generating capacity of net-metered systems equals 0.5% of a utility’s peak demand during 1996.* At least one-half of the utility’s available aggregate net metering capacity is reserved for systems generating electricity using renewable energy.

Although the utility must provide a single, bi-directional meter, the customer must provide the current transformer enclosure (if required), the meter socket or sockets, and junction box. Net excess generation (NEG) is credited to the customer’s next bill at the utility’s retail rate. However, on April 30 of each calendar year, any remaining NEG is surrendered to the utility without compensation to the customer. Meter aggregation, the combination of readings from and billings for all meters on property owned or leased by a customer within a single utility’s service territory, is provided at a customer’s request. (Meter aggregation is limited to 100 kW per customer.) The electricity produced by a meter-aggregated customer is first used to offset electricity provided by the utility to that customer; any excess kilowatt-hours from a billing period will be credited equally to the customer’s remaining meters.

Net-metered systems must include all equipment necessary to meet applicable safety, power quality and interconnection requirements established by the National Electric Code, the National Electric Safety Code, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) and Underwriters Laboratories (UL). Utilities may not require net-metered customers to comply with additional safety or performance standards, or to purchase additional liability insurance. Utilities also may not charge customers any additional standby, capacity, interconnection, or other fee or charge without approval from the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC). Utilities are not liable for damage caused by net-metered systems.

Taking advantage of Washington’s Renewable Energy Production Incentives does not reduce or impact savings achieved through net metering. However, utilities may require separate metering for production, and customers must pay all costs associated with the installation of production metering. While the ownership of renewable energy credits (RECs) associated with generation is not specified in the state’s net-metering law, the production incentive law states that customer-generators retain ownership of RECs.

*The aggregate capacity limit was 0.25% in previous years, and increased to 0.5% on January 1, 2014.

Authorities

    • Date Enacted:
      1998

Contact

  • Phil Lou

  • Organization:

    Washington State University

  • Address:

    PO Box 43165
    Olympia, WA 98504-3165

  • Phone:

    (360) 956-2132

  • E-Mail:

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the cost per kW of CWC’s turbines compared to conventional power technology?

The CWC 36kW cost is $2013 per kW of power production capacity. According to the AWEA, the average cost for electricity production capacity in the USA is $6096 per kW —- 303% higher.

Who is CWC’s competition?

We are aware of 334 companies in the small wind turbine space. Most of them only produce very small turbines (under 10kW).  None of them price their electricity production capacity anywhere as low as Change Wind’s price ($2013 per kW,  i.e. $72,440 per turbine).

Is the CWC 36kW competitive with 3-blade horizontal axis turbines? 

Yes, very much so.  On a cost per kW basis, the CWC 36kW sells for 72% below the competition in small and medium turbines.  It pruduces electricity using turbulent air only 10 meters over the surface, cutting in at just 6 mph, and reaching optimal efficiency at 12 mph.  Since it captures wind from any direction it does not have to be mechanically turned into the wind direction.

Are there any service issues I should be concerned about?

The CWC 36kW comes with a 10 year warranty which can be extended an additional 10 years as long as the annual maintenance has been carried out. The turbine needs an inspection, oil change, lubrication, electronics check, and power wash every 100,000 kWh, approximately once each year, costing roughly $500 in most areas.

How is Change Wind able to price its turbines so low?  

Change Wind passes along to customers the benefit of high efficiency and low cost manufacturing.   Production is performed at a re-purposed New England wire factory building obtained at below market cost, with on-site hydro-electric power at 66% below market cost.  The company uses state-of-the-art CNC and robotic machinery, extracting its craftsmanship from the sophisticated machinery and tools, not from expensive workmen.

 

Are there tax incentives for on-site wind systems?

On October 3, 2008, the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, H.R. 1424, was enacted into law.  It includes a federal-level investment tax credit to help consumers purchase wind turbines for home, farm, or business use.  Owners of systems with 100 kW of capacity or less can receive a credit of 30% of the installed cost of the system.  It is available for equipment installed through December 31, 2016.  Source: http://energytaxincentives.org/business/renewables.php.