Net Metering in North Carolina

Net Metering

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Last Updated September 19, 2015

Program Overview

    • Implementing Sector:

      State

    • Category:

      Regulatory Policy

    • State:

      North Carolina

    • Incentive Type:

      Net Metering

    • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

      Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Biomass, Hydroelectric, Hydrogen, 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, Tribal Government, Agricultural, Institutional

    • Applicable Utilities:

      Investor-owned utilities

    • System Capacity Limit:

      1 MW

    • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

      No limit specified

    • Net Excess Generation:

      Credited to customer’s next bill at retail rate; granted to utility at beginning of summer billing season

    • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

      Utility owns RECs (unless customer chooses to net meter under a time of use tariff with demand charges)

    • Meter Aggregation:

      Not addressed

Summary

The North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC) established net metering rules for the state’s three investor-owned utilities — Duke Energy, Progress Energy and Dominion North Carolina Power — in 2005. The NCUC subsequently amended the rules, most recently in 2009.

Eligibility and Availability 

Net metering is available to all customers who own and operate systems that generate electricity using solar energy, wind energy, hydropower, ocean or wave energy, biomass resources, combined heat and power (CHP) which uses waste heat derived from eligible renewable resources, or hydrogen derived from eligible renewable resources.* Customers may net meter under any available rate schedule. However, customers that choose to take service under any tariff other than a time-of-use demand (TOUD) tariff must surrender to the utility all renewable energy credits (RECs) associated with the customer’s generation – with no compensation for the customer.

The individual system capacity limit is one megawatt (MW). There is no aggregate capacity limit on net-metered systems. For residential systems up to 20 kilowatts (kW) and non-residential systems up to 100 kW in capacity, utilities may not charge any standby charges or any additional metering charges other than those charged to customers who do not net meter under the applicable rate schedule. For larger systems, utilities are allowed to impose standby charges consistent with approved standby rates applicable to other customer-owned generation.

Net Excess Generation

In general, any customer net excess generation (NEG) during a billing period is carried forward to the following billing period at the utility’s full retail rate, and then surrendered to the utility – with no compensation for the customer – at the beginning of each summer billing season. However, the treatment of generation and NEG for customers on TOU-demand tariffs is more complicated. For these customers, on-peak generation is used to offset on-peak consumption, and off-peak generation is used to offset off-peak consumption. Any remaining on-peak generation is then used to offset off-peak consumption. Off-peak generation may only be used to offset off-peak consumption.

Utilities must file with the NCUC annual reports indicating the number of net-metering applicants and customer-generators, the aggregate capacity of net-metered generation, the size and types of renewable-energy systems, the amounts of on-peak and off-peak generation credited and ultimately granted to the utility, and the reasons for any rejections or removals of customer-generators from a net-metering arrangement.

* In July 2006, the NCUC extended net metering to eligible systems with battery storage. “Gaming” a net-metering arrangement by using battery storage to manipulate a TOU tariff is not allowed.

Authorities

    • Date Enacted:
      10/20/2005

    • Date Enacted:
      12/27/2005

    • Date Enacted:
      7/6/2006

    • Date Enacted:
      03/31/2009

    • Effective Date:
      06/01/2009

Contact

Memos

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  • 09/19/2015 by Brian Lips

    No policy changes.

    Blue Ridge EMC – Net Metering

    Last Updated December 17, 2015

    Program Overview

      • Implementing Sector:

        Utility

      • Category:

        Regulatory Policy

      • State:

        North Carolina

      • Incentive Type:

        Net Metering

      • Utilities:

        Blue Ridge Elec Member Corp

      • Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:

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

      • Applicable Sectors:

        Residential

      • Applicable Utilities:

        Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation

      • System Capacity Limit:

        25 kilowatts

      • Aggregate Capacity Limit:

        None

      • Net Excess Generation:

        Net excess generation is credited at the retail rate. However, the retail rate for net metering customers is lower than the retail rate for general residential customers. Credits roll over month-to month until May 31 of each year, when remaining credit is granted to the utility without customer compensation.

      • Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits:

        Utility owns RECs

      • Meter Aggregation:

        Not allowed

    Summary

    The Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation offers net metering to its residential customers with solar photovoltaic, wind, or micro-hydro generators up to 25 kilowatts. There is no aggregate capacity limit.

    Net excess generation is credited at retail rate. However, net metering customers are not served on the general residential rate tariff; net metering customers have a lower retail energy rate and higher basic facilities charge than general residential customers. Net metering customers also have a higher minimum bill than general residential customers. Excess credit rolls over month-to-month, but is granted to the utility without compensation on May 31 of each year.

    Authorities

      • Date Enacted:
        04/30/2015

      • Effective Date:
        05/04/2015

    Contact

    Memos

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    • 12/17/2015 by Autumn Proudlove

      Created program entry.

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