TEXAS – During an open meeting on December 4, the Public Utilities Commission of Texas (PUCT) declined to adopt proposed Phase II net metering rules. According to PUCT staff, the PUCT will try to pare down the rules in order to provide more benefit to customer generators. Phase II of the modified rules will be up for adoption again on December 18, at which time the PUCT will also provide recommendations for further legislative action. Because Phase I has already been adopted, it is unlikely that PUCT staff will be able to improve much about the terms of net metering in Texas. Phase I of the PUCT order clarified that net metering will not be available in areas of Texas in which retail electric competition has been introduced.
It is likely that the PUCT declined to adopt Phase II due to a November 26 memo from the Competitive Markets Division of the PUCT which stated that “the legislature appears to have believed that it was enacting amendments…that would foster distributed renewable generation…if the Commission cannot adopt rules that do so, a better course may be to not adopt the rule but, instead, propose additional amendments…that would provide real benefits to distributed renewable generation.”
PUCT documents on this subject are available under Project 34890 while the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) is addressing settlement issues for small renewable generators (<50 kW) through its Profiling Working Group.