As the technology develops and, more importantly, becomes cost-effective enough to be purchased on a wide scale, small power production by individuals and small businesses will increase. In order to make this an economically-viable option for the membership, Northeast Oklahoma Electric Cooperative, Inc. has established a net energy billing rate that would apply to those members who qualify.
What is net metering?
Net energy billing, often referred to as net metering, is a metering arrangement in which a meter is installed at the point of delivery that measures power flow in both the forward and reverse direction. At the end of the billing period, consumers are billed based on the sum of delivered and received power. If a member produces more energy than they consume, the kWh charge is zero and the bill will reflect the excess energy which shall be credited during the next billing period to the member at the monthly avoided energy cost per kilowatt-hour. If a member uses more than they produce, they are billed for the energy used along with the monthly service charge.
Why net metering?
Facilities are allowed to have an installed generating capacity of 300 kW or less. Installations with a generating capacity equal to or greater than 125% of the recorded peak at the facility may not be eligible for the net metering billing arrangement. The average home consumes about 14,000 – 15,000 kWh per year. It is very possible for a member to reduce the total energy usage to zero by installing a power generation facility. Net metering encourages alternative energy sources and a greener Oklahoma.
What are the requirements?
There are some requirements in place that a potential small power producer must abide by. These requirements all hinge around one key factor: SAFETY! The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) developed the governing standard for small power production facilities. IEEE Standard 1547 defines requirements necessary for a safe and effective power generator. Most all commercially available installations meet IEEE 1547 requirements but members should check before purchasing to ensure compliance. Part of IEEE 1547 addresses the requirement of a power production facility to shut down when power is lost on the grid. This prevents the possibility of a back-feed that could be hazardous to line workers trying to restore power. Also required, is a lockable disconnect accessible by the Cooperative. This allows line workers to isolate the power production system from the grid if needed.
Need More Information?
Small power generation facilities range in size and type, generation medium, options, and installation ease. Members are encouraged to research all options before making a commitment to purchase. This includes a phone call to the Cooperative to discuss historical energy usage, interconnection details, and any other aspect of a renewable energy production facility. Cooperative personnel are always willing to answer any questions you may have.
Please call 800.256.6405 and ask to speak to our engineering department.