The Maine Public Utilities Commission on Dec. 17 granted solar installer Insource Renewables LLC’s request to exclude solar generation produced by medium and large non-residential customers of Central Maine Power Company and Emera Maine from gross metering provisions due to excessive costs that are shifted onto other ratepayers. The commission agreed that the cost of additional metering equipment, which is required to implement changes to its net energy billing program, exceed the recovered revenue for these classes of customers, resulting in additional costs that are not offset by savings.
In 2017, the commission adopted amendments to its net energy billing program to gradually decrease over time the amount of a facility’s output that can be netted against the transmission and distribution portion of a customer’s bill to reflect reductions in generation technology costs, while leaving the netting for the supply portion unchanged. The program, designed to promote customer-sited renewable energy to meet individual electricity needs, allows the use of excess output to offset current and future transmission and distribution and volumetric energy charges. The amendments were intended to address cost shifts from net metering to other customers.
The order also directs the utilities to provide more information in their biannual reports detailing the costs associated with installing a second meter, program implementation, and billing system changes.
Central Maine Power is a subsidiary of Avangrid Inc. owned by Iberdrola SA. Emera Maine is a subsidiary of Emera Inc.