Imperial, California - Although IID’s net energy metering program is now fully subscribed, the district is continuing to process incentive program and interconnection applications on a first-come, first-served basis.
Established under California Assembly Bill 920 in 2009, the state’s net metering program requires utilities to establish a standard tariff to compensate net energy metering customers for generating excess electricity produced by eligible solar or wind power systems. Under the current law, the net metering cap is 5 percent of a utility’s peak demand.
“IID strongly supports California’s clean energy goals and we also support our customers who make the choice to install solar at their homes or businesses. IID ratepayers can add solar and continue to receive the benefits that solar power brings; however, we are continuing on our path to eliminate the subsidy from non-solar customers to solar customers,” said IID Energy Manager Vicken Kasarjian.
During a net energy metering program presentation at Tuesday’s regularly scheduled IID Board of Directors meeting, staff said that IID is working to develop a community solar project as large as 20 megawatts that will allow all IID customers the ability to participate in solar without the necessity of on-site installation. They also noted that IID is in the process of developing a community storage project. Both projects are expected to be brought back to the board for approvals at a later date.
Customers who are in the process of installing a solar system can still apply for interconnection to the IID grid. Interconnection applications will be processed under IID’s existing rate structures and customers will be compensated for 100 percent of their energy generation up to the total amount consumed each month. IID is not eliminating the net metering subsidy; however, using a monthly format will lessen rate impacts for non-solar customers.
“We will continue to study the impact of any new program on system reliability, cost shifts between ratepayers and overall rate pressures,” added Kasarjian.
Customers interested in solar are reminded that even with a solar system they are still using and interconnecting with the IID electric system. To ensure safety and reliability, any solar added to a home or business must be reviewed and approved by IID and the city or county having jurisdiction, before interconnecting to the grid.
Installation of a solar system is a significant long-term investment and should be made with accurate information. IID customers should understand the various solar offerings that are available in the marketplace today. Customers thinking about going solar are encouraged to visit www.iid.com/solar to learn more about the process and research options and contractors prior to initiating a new project.