Vol. 17, No. 2

This newsletter has been designed to provide state-level policy updates and capture emerging regional trends in net metering, interconnection and related topics. Please send any relevant news or upcoming events to laurelp@irecusa.org.

Note from the Editor

Solar, will you marry me? (For a contract period of 20 years)


Just in time for Valentine's Day, the Minnesota Department of Commerce (DOC) released an extensive proposal for a value of solar (VOS) methodology, as required by 2013 legislation.


Under this new state energy law (HF 729), utilities will be able to apply with the public utility commission (PUC) to replace net metering with a contracted, 20-year VOS rate, compensating customers under a bill credit mechanism that proponents of the VOS rate claim will more accurately reflect the value of that solar generation to the utility.


Distributed generation (DG) is a two-way street:  it provides benefits as well as some costs to utilities. At the previously low solar penetration levels, retail rate credits under state net metering policies have traditionally been viewed as adequate and easy compensation for excess energy. As solar ramps up however, discussions and studies have also been ramping up to determine solar's actual net value for a particular state or utility. Just which benefits and costs to include, and how to account for them in these studies, has been a matter of rather diverse opinion. IREC has provided guidance on the topic in a series of papers including the recent A Regulator's Guidebook: Calculating the Benefits and Costs of Distributed Solar Generation.


[Continued at irecusa.org]


State News In Detail

Northeastern States

Massachusetts to require grid modernization plans for electric utilities. Read more.


New York Governor announces NY Green Bank is open for business.  Read more.


Mid-Atlantic States 

New Jersey law warns firefighters of Solar Panels. Read more.


Renewable energy credit market is on the upswing in Pennsylvania. Read more.


Midwestern States      

State-led work group to review Michigan utilities' stake in solar. Read more.

Southern States    

Duke Energy wants to pay less for rooftop solar in North Carolina. Read more. 


Western States     

Arizona Commission opens benefit/cost docket for DG. Read more.


Colorado PUC keeps net metering in place for now. Read more.


Other States        

Hawai'i PUC releases renewable procurement policy evaluation. Read more.



Federal and Miscellaneous News

`Smart' Inverters May Give Solar Reactive Capability. Read more.

In This Issue
Upcoming Events
March 19
Portland, OR

April 28-30
Newport Beach, CA
About this Newsletter
Connecting to the Grid is a free, electronic newsletter published each month by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC).




IREC does not assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product or process that is referred to or linked to in this newsletter. Reference to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply IREC's endorsement or recommendation. See the fair use notice here. 


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