July 2011 Connecting to the Grid Newsletter



Note from the Editor

In Search of High Penetration PV Policies

In some areas of the country, states are beginning to experience higher levels of PV grid penetration than have ever been seen before.  While this is essentially good news, it also presents several challenges for policymakers going forward.  A 2008 NREL report titled High-Penetration, Grid-Connected Photovoltaic Technology Codes and Standards, noted that, “Primarily, the bulk-level connection concerns relate to the need for better understanding how to plan and operate the transmission grid and other generation resources based on renewable energy operating characteristics.”  The report also highlighted the following grid impacts that could be affected by high penetration PV: voltage and reactive power regulation; power quality (harmonics, flicker, DC injection); protection design and coordination (e.g., short circuits, re-closers, fuses); unintentional islanding; equipment grounding; load and generation imbalance (e.g., generation interaction with controllable loads–demand-side management); and storage and storage controls.  That’s a lot to think about when designing policies. [Continued in Newsletter]

State News in Detail

Northeast States

New Hampshire allows CHP technologies to net meter


Mid-Atlantic States

Delaware PSC finalizes community net metering rules

Pennsylvania PUC issues proposed clarification on retail choice net metering


Midwestern States

Wisconsin PSC shows positive headway toward renewable energy goal            


Southern States

Florida PSC attributes growth in renewables to state’s net metering rule

Texas PUC drops proposal to mandate any non-wind RPS


Western States

California PUC issues proposed decision on expanding virtual net metering; sets rates for net surplus compensation

Boulder, Colorado weighs utility options to increase renewables

Idaho utility voluntarily invests in solar

Nevada enacts net metering changes

Upcoming Events


IREC Releases Solar Market Trends Report


Miscellaneous News 

Home Depot to start selling small wind turbines

Renewable energy production surpasses nuclear in the U.S.


Download the full newsletter as a PDF:  July 2011 Connecting to the Grid Newsletter


While customer-sited net metering and interconnection policies are primarily addressed at the state level, they are also becoming important on a regional basis. This newsletter has been designed to provide state-level policy updates and capture emerging regional trends. Connecting to the Grid is a free, electronic newsletter published each month by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC) and the North Carolina Solar Center at North Carolina State University. Click here to subscribe.

Editor: Laurel Varnado
NC Solar Center, NC State University


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