District Reaches Solar Energy Milestone

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iidIMPERIAL COUNTY – With close to 2,600 customer solar installations generating more than 40 megawatts of electrical energy, Imperial Irrigation District is nearing full subscription of its net energy metering program.

Established under California Assembly Bill 920 in late 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 law, the net metering cap is 5 percent of a utility’s peak demand.

At the end of February, 82 percent of IID’s net energy metering capacity was installed and, based on projects that have already been submitted, the net metering capacity is expected to reach 100 percent once current projects become energized.

“Although the program is fully subscribed, IID will continue to process incentive program applications as well as interconnection applications on a first-come, first-served basis,” said Javier Camarillo, public benefit program specialist.  “In the event that net energy metering capacity becomes available, it will be offered to the subsequent interconnection.”

Customers can continue to submit interconnections and reap the benefits of their renewable energy projects, although, once the net energy metering program is fully subscribed, new connections will not receive annual credits for excess energy generation.

In 2015, IID net energy metering customers had generated an excess of  1,108,493 kilowatt-hours, earning a total of $63,406 in compensation credit.