On June 19, 2008, Governor David Paterson announced how pleased he was that the legislature had passed two net metering bills which will encourage the use of renewable energy within New York. The Governor is expected to sign these bills.
The first bill (S7171-B / A11146) permits net metering for residential solar systems up to 25 kW, non-residential solar systems up to the lesser of 2 MW or the customer’s peak load for the prior 12 months, and farm systems (agricultural waste) up to the lesser of 1 MW or the customer’s peak load for the prior 12 months. Other key points: each utility shall develop a schedule of consistent and reasonable net metering rates for PSC approval; at year-end, or the end of an annualized period, excess credits are paid out at the utility’s avoided cost of generation; maximum aggregated capacity for net metering will equal one percent of each utility’s 2005 peak demand; and, each DG system must have an external disconnect switch.
The second bill (S8481 / A11582) provides net metering for wind systems as follows: residential up to 25 kW; farms up to 500 kW; and, non-residential up to 2 MW. Other key points: net metering credits shall be given at a one-to-one retail rate ratio; year-end payout (for residential or farm DG only) will be at the utility’s avoided cost of generation; maximum aggregated capacity for net metering will equal three tenths of one percent of each utility’s 2005 peak demand; and, no additional liability insurance requirements will be imposed. The New York Public Service Commission will promulgate the rules necessary to comply with this legislation, and the utilities will file the appropriate tariffs.