Bringing It All Together: The Importance of Dispute Resolution in the Interconnection Process
In IREC’s 9th and final interconnection post in GreenTech Media, Erica McConnell former special counsel and Laura Beaton, associate with Shute, Mihaly and Weinberger LLP, attorneys for IREC, address a widespread issue: dispute resolution.
Throughout IREC’s interconnection blog series, we have discussed best practices for the “rules of the road” in interconnection, from increasing transparency, to fairly allocating system upgrade costs, to integrating energy storage into interconnection procedures. And one thread connecting most of the topics we’ve covered is that there is nearly always a chance for disagreements to arise, even with best practices in place.
Although disputes can pop up anywhere, in IREC’s experience, they most commonly arise around timeline compliance and the identification of and cost estimates for system upgrades necessary to accommodate project. But whatever the conflict, effective dispute resolution is key to ensuring the interconnection process runs smoothly and efficiently for all.
Including clear dispute resolution provisions within interconnection procedures is a critical first step. As we explained in a previous post, however, when a conflict arises, developers may be hesitant to pursue a formal complaint because they need to maintain good working relationships with the utilities. But what other option do they have?
Read the full article.