solar panels

United States just hit a new milestone: 2 million solar installations.

Noticed any new solar arrays on your neighbors’ roofs? I’m guessing you have since the United States just hit a new milestone: 2 million solar installations. Here’s why that’s a big deal: It took the U.S. 40 years to accomplish the first million solar installations. Guess how many years it took us to install the second million? Three.

That’s good news both for the solar industry and the planet. More solar means more energy generated without greenhouse gas emissions. The number of new sun-powered energy installs is on track to double again in five years, according to the solar association that did the analysis, and by the time we’re deep into the 2020s, solar will become “the dominant new form of energy generation.” Whew! That was fast.

The residential sector — people putting up solar panels on their houses — is pushing the rapid growth in the solar industry. As prices keep falling, more and more folks will invest in green energy. Already, 12 million homes across the nation get their power from solar, the analysis says.

California is still leading the charge in terms of new installations, but places like South Carolina are gung ho about solar, too. “According to our latest forecasts, by 2024, there will be on average, one solar installation per minute,” said Michelle Davis, a senior solar analyst with Wood Mackenzie, which contributed to the study.

On Friday, May 3, renewable energy just surpassed coal.

In April, renewables outpaced coal in energy production in the U.S. for the first time — ever.

Coal is typically our second largest source of energy after natural gas. That changed this spring: Renewable energy, like hydro, solar, wind, and geothermal, is projected to exceed coal-powered energy by 325,000 megawatt-hours per day in April, and by 32,000 megawatt-hours per day in May, according to a new report by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis.

It’s not all good news: By June, coal might reclaim its spot as the second largest source of energy. That’s because coal-powered plants undergo a slow spring period as they close for maintenance to prepare for the more demanding summer. The IEEFA estimates that it will be a few years still before renewables can consistently surpass coal in energy production.

With more than 100 U.S. cities committed to running on clean energy, and with the price of solar and wind falling by 90 percent and 70 percent, respectively, in the last decade, the future’s looking bright — and powered by renewables.

solar in Midwest

The Midwest is calling for a clean energy revolution

The clean energy revolution has spread to the Midwest, with lawmakers in Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin all proposing plans for 100 percent carbon-free energy in recent days.

The boldest plan is in Illinois, where Democrats now have a “trifecta” — when one party controls the governorship and both houses of the legislature. Back in January, Governor J.B. Pritzker issued an executive order calling for 100 percent renewable energy by 2050. Then last week, Democrats in the state house and state senate introduced legislation to do just that.

In wonk-speak, “renewable” usually means wind, solar, geothermal, and hydropower — to the exclusion of nuclear and biofuels. Eliminating nuclear power in Illinois is a big deal because it’s the leading state of nuclear power generation in the country, with 11 plants currently in operation, all of which are on track to be retired by 2050. The new legislation would forbid their replacement, cutting nuclear technology out of the picture — a controversial step among advocates for climate action.

Republicans still hold power in legislatures in Minnesota and Wisconsin, so governors there are taking a more permissive strategy — demanding only “clean” (rather than “renewable”) energy by 2050, which would allow space for nuclear and biofuels. This wider field of energy sources could be key to building a bipartisan coalition for climate action.

Democratic trifecta states like Washington, Maine, New York, and New Mexico are working toward passing 100 percent clean energy bills, too — but it’s worth contemplating that bipartisan success in the Midwest could pave the way for a flood of similar efforts in almost every state. California, Hawaii, and the District of Columbia already have 100 percent carbon-free legislation on the books.

Of course, in the context of a Green New Deal — which calls for 100 percent clean energy by 2030 nationwide in line with the recent IPCC report — all of these timelines are still much too lenient. Nonetheless, passing legislation to require a carbon-free future is the first step to, well, actually getting it.

Credit/Source: Eric Holthaus, Grist

Going solar

Washington and Nevada join the swelling list of states aiming for 100% clean power

The peer pressure to clean up the electric grid is gripping the country.

Recent weeks have brought a flurry of ambitious clean-energy pledges. On Earth Day, Nevada’s governor signed into law a measure banning fossil-fuel generated electricity by 2050. Washington’s legislature just sent a bill to Governor Jay Inslee (the presidential contender) that would have the Evergreen State running on purely carbon-free electricity by 2030. Last month, New Mexico committed to 100 percent clean electricity by 2045. California, Hawaii, Washington D.C., and Puerto Rico passed similar laws a bit further back. There are similar bills pending in Illinois, Minnesota, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Florida, and Massachusetts. And don’t forget the 100-odd cities — from Orlando, Florida to Pueblo, Colorado — that have vowed to kick their fossil-fuel addiction.

“Voters and state legislatures are being pretty darn clear that there’s widespread support for getting the electricity sector to 100 percent clean,” said Josh Freed, who runs the energy program at the Third Way think tank in Washington, D.C. “In our wildest expectations, we couldn’t have anticipated this much action this quickly.”

It’s a seismic shift from the 1990s and 2000s when states made goals to get get a certain share of their electricity from renewable power. Those laws were designed to help the nascent renewables industry find its footing, Freed said. Now that the industry is up and running, “the next question is, how do we get carbon off the grid?”

That’s why everyone seems to be excited about the same goal. And this isn’t just the flavor of the month — there’s a good reason to focus on a carbon-free electric system. Though there are still hurdles to leap, states basically know how to eliminate emissions from the electrical grid, said Mike O’Boyle, head of electricity policy at the think tank Energy Innovation in San Francisco. You can’t say the same about eliminating emissions from air-travel or concrete production, at least not yet. So squeezing the greenhouse gases out of electricity is a clearly achievable goal. And there are beneficial knock-on effects: It paves the way to clean up transportation (by switching to electric vehicles) and buildings (by switching to electric heating and cooling).

“It thinks it a robust and meaningful trend,” O’Boyle said. “A lot of gubernatorial candidates and presidential candidates have campaigned on 100-percent clean electricity. It’s become part of the conventional wisdom that it’s a realistic and effective policy goal.”

Credit/source: Nathanael Johnson, at Grist

Solar Panels Buy vs Lease Explained

Should You Buy or Lease Your Solar Panels? Buying solar panels requires an investment and more decision-making than leasing, but over the long term, the benefits of owning your system are hard to beat.

Best Ways to Pay for Your Panels

Cash
Buying your solar electric system outright is best. It usually costs $12,000 to $20,000 after tax credits and can reduce your electricity bill by 70 to 100 percent, depending on the size and orientation of your roof and local regulations. Most systems pay for themselves in three to seven years.

Home Equity Loan
If you need to finance your solar panel purchase, the most cost-effective way to do it is to use a home equity loan or a home equity line of credit. Because your house serves as collateral, these options have low-interest rates (currently about 3 to 5 percent). The interest you pay is tax deductible. Equity loans range from 5 to 20 years and usually have fixed interest rates. Equity lines last 10 years and have variable rates (so the interest may increase).

Solar Loan
There are unsecured and secured solar loans. With an unsecured loan, your house doesn’t act as collateral and the interest isn’t tax deductible. Many solar installers work with lenders that offer solar loans, but you’ll probably find better rates by directly checking with banks, and credit unions. Watch out for high origination fees. Fannie Mae also offers consumers financing for solar system installations through its HomeStyle Energy Mortgage Program when they buy a new house or refinance.

A look at what you lose by leasing solar panels

A comparison of how much a residential solar energy system could save a homeowner, depending on whether it was bought up front, bought with a loan, or lease.

SOLAR BUY VS LEASE

Why Leasing Isn’t a Bright Idea

The steep up-front costs for a residential solar system can make a leasing company’s sales pitch sound pretty inviting: Pay little or nothing and save hundreds of dollars per year on average. (The premise is that you save because the combination of your lease payment and your electric bill is less than what you currently pay for power.) Leasing can also look seductively simple compared with buying: There’s no need to shop separately for an installer and financing; you just sign on the dotted line. So it’s not surprising that 72 percent of the people who installed residential solar systems in 2014 did so through leasing or another type of third-party arrangement. But the reality is not quite so sweet.

Your Savings Will Be Modest

People who lease their solar systems save far less than those who buy them outright or with a loan (they also miss out on federal tax benefits and any local incentives). Many leases contain an escalator clause that can further reduce savings by increasing payments 3 percent per year. So if you’re paying 12 cents per kilowatt-hour in year one, with a 3 percent escalator, you’ll be paying 18.2 cents in year 15. That means that if the cost of energy doesn’t rise as quickly as the contracted lease payments increase, your savings could evaporate.

You Lose Control of Your Roof

Leasing companies want to maximize their profit, so there’s a chance you could wind up with more panels than you want and that they could be installed in highly visible places—such as facing the street—without any regard to appearance. To avoid that, check the final system design and placement before signing the lease. It could be different from the initial mock-up.

Leases Can Scare Off Home Buyers

If you put your house on the market before the lease is up (usually 20 years), you will either have to buy out the lease or the person purchasing your home will have to assume it—which some are reluctant to do.

Some solar leasing companies may offer to relocate their systems from one house to another. That could cost $500 for an initial audit and another $500 to transfer the panels if the leasing company determines it can be done. You would also need approval from your utility and local landmarks commission or the condo or homeowner’s association, if applicable. Plus the new house must be able to accommodate the old system.

And remember: At the end of the lease, the solar company could remove the system—and your savings along with it.

Service Plans Don’t Serve You
Though leasing companies tout their service plans, maintenance is a red herring. Equipment problems aren’t covered by the maintenance plan, they’re covered by the warranty. And if a storm destroys your panels, the damage may be covered by your homeowners’ insurance.

no cost solar power system

Solar power system for $0 out of the pocket. Explained.

So here it goes. Let’s assume your solar energy installed costs $30.000,
The federal government will give you 30% back in tax credits.
Illinois just became state number 7 offering REC, renewable energy credits, that equates to approximately 30% total cost of the solar energy system. So now we have at least 60% covered by incentives. That’s about $18.000. If you are a homeowner, in order for you to take advantage of these incentives, you have to invest upfront in your solar system to be able to qualify for these incentives.

So what we do is we offer you $0 down financing for 12 months with no payment and no interest called 12M SAC. Same as cash! And if approved you’re getting yourself a solar energy system installed without a penny out of your pocket and keep in mind, your savings start day one after your solar system is live. I know, I know you’re asking now, what about remaining $12.000 out of $30.000 total cost, right? Well, we will attempt to balloon your loan with the balance to be paid for overtime of 5 to 15 years. And I personally can guarantee you that that payment will be lower than your current utility bill. If you don’t have to send mandatory monthly money to Comed, you can use that money to make your solar energy payment.jd pro electric

So after all, you’re not spending a dime out of your pocket, you’re paying for your solar system using OPM, other people money. All rich people use this definition daily to get even richer than they already are. Having said that, let’s compare your electric bill to your solar bill. Utility bill comes your way forever, you can not pay it off and worst of all you have no control over its rate hikes. Every time Comed raises your rate, you have to bend over and make that payment regardless if you can or can not afford it. If you do not make that payment, tough luck, no power in the house. Now let’s talk about the remaining balance of your solar system financed for you. Not only this payment will be lower than your current electric bill but it is a fixed payment, so you are not exposed to changes in rates and amount of payments.

Here is the most important part!!! You can and will actually pay it off. On average takes Illinois homeowners 3 to 6 years to pay it off! After this time, no expanse on electricity at all. Free from the sun!!! Here is bad news. Since this is available to almost all homeowners in Illinois, most of them will jump on this investment opportunity for many reasons! If you want to know those reasons please call me at 888 537 7660 ext 702. So all others, usually skeptics will be stuck with the electric bill that will skyrocket to double or even triple its amount today because your utility is too big to fail company and it will get approval from the state for never-ending increases to stay afloat. Now you tell me if going solar is a good or bad idea!

All this already is happening in other states that offered incentives to homeowners years ago, so I’m not sucking this info out of my thumb! I am in this industry for 10 years now, I’ve seen it all and I know exactly its future. 👍 P.S. let me add one important fact!!! Solar energy system also brings equity to your house after installation. And it brings quite a bit of money, on average $4 per watt production. So, for example, the 7.4kW solar system will bring you back about $29.600, and if your system total cost before incentives is $30.000 and you’re getting $18.000 in incentives, you as a homeowner actually are making a profit the moment your solar power system is turned on!!! Makes sense?? Of course, it does. As I said, there are many benefits of going solar. Call me at 888 537 7660 ext 702 to learn all of them and all other details about the solar industry.

srec

SREC – Solar Renewable Energy Credits

What is a REC?

A Renewable Energy Credit (“REC”) is a tradable, environmental asset that represents the clean attributes of solar electricity. (1 REC = 1,000 kWh) This opportunity is different than a net metering agreement with the utility where system owners are credited for excess generation. RECs are valued for the total energy production from an array and therefore represents the carbon or pollution avoided from the grid. RECs are a way to track and monetize these environmental benefits and compensate owners for the countless benefits to Illinois.

The IPA requires that procurement bids meet a minimum of 1MW of installed capacity. These can be single projects or bundled together to meet that threshold. Small projects can work with 3rd party aggregators if they are not able to meet that guideline. JD PRO Solar offers help with Illinois REC applications or customers can open their own accounts with Carbon Solutions Group or SRECTrade. The procurement functions similar to an auction and bids are reviewed based on system size and price. The IPA has a target that 50% of the RECs procured are from systems <25kW and will evaluate bids below a confidential benchmark. Details from past DG procurement events including winning bid prices are listed on the IPA website.

The best states to go solar aren’t always the sunniest; those who benefit the most from installing a solar PV system for their home spend a lot in electricity and live in a state with good solar incentives.

Illinois may not have the year-round sunshine of the Southwest, but it does have a great solar market because of the available financial incentives. In addition to the 30 percent federal solar tax credit for solar system owners, Illinois residents can receive additional financial benefits through the state’s solar renewable energy certificate (SREC) market.

Solar incentives in Illinois
Illinois has a renewable portfolio standard (RPS) that commits the state to produce 25 percent of its electricity from renewable energy by 2025. Of that 25 percent, 1.5 percent must come from solar. Solar panel system

SREC

owners can sell the SRECs that their panels produce alongside their electricity in order to help the state meet the solar requirement. This is why the renewable energy that Illinois homeowners produce has a monetary value in addition to offering savings on electricity bills.

In the past, the Illinois Power Authority (IPA) bought SRECs in “procurement rounds.” Solar system owners would typically sell their SRECs through an aggregator who acts as a broker between property owners and the state. These brokers will pay property owners for their SRECs on a quarterly basis over the course of five years, and sell the SRECs to the IPA during the specified procurement rounds. With the new SREC program, it’s a bit different – the current SREC program lasts for a longer duration, and the price you receive for each SREC is fixed and dependent on your utility company, system size, and how soon you go solar.

FEJA and the Adjustable Block (AB) Program

In 2017, the Illinois government created new legislation that altered the existing REC program structure in the state. The Future Energy Jobs Act (FEJA) took effect on June 1, 2017. This legislation is designed to stimulate job creation in clean energy, assist in the state in meeting its ambitious RPS goal by 2025, and promote energy efficiency.

FEJA includes a proposed new incentive structure known as the Adjustable Block (AB) Program. Rather than the old five-year SREC program in Illinois, this new incentive structure lasts for 15 years. The SRECs are sold at a fixed price which is determined by contracts, rather than the variable market prices of the old SREC program.

The AB Program uses a “block” structure to determine the value of an SREC. The state set a specific amount of installed solar (in megawatts) and an associated SREC price for each block. Once that amount is reached in a set block, the incentive will transition to a new block with a lower price. The result is that, as more people install solar, there are fewer funds available for the incentive. The block you’re eligible for depends on a multitude of factors:

Capacity: As blocks fill up, the price for one SREC will decline.
Type of project: Community solar is eligible, but for different values than systems located on your property
Size of your solar installation: Incentive values are categorized based on size (systems under 10 kW, 10-25 kW, 25-100 kW, and so on).
Utility company: You’ll be placed into a specific block depending on your electricity distributor and your load zone.

Below is an image of the current blocks and pricing information from the Illinois Power Authority.

srec

Here’s an example to help you understand the proposed pricing. Let’s assume you own a 7 kW system that produces 8 SRECs each year, and you are a customer of Ameren. Under the Adjustable Block Program, if you go solar while there’s still capacity in block 1, your 8 SRECs a year would sell for about $85 each. In your first year, you’ll earn $680 in SREC sales. If you install solar after block 1 fills up, you’ll be enrolled in block 2. Each of your 8 SRECs would sell for about $82, or $660 in the first year.

The pricing is fixed for 15 years; while a solar panel system may experience degradation throughout the years and produce slightly fewer SRECs overall, the number of dollars that each SREC sells for will remain the same.

How to earn SRECs in Illinois:
The first step towards earning SRECs is to shop for a solar panel system. Once you move forward with a solar energy system, JD PRO Solar work with you and the state to ensure that your system is eligible for SRECs once it’s operational.

With these incentives in the works, it’s a great time to get your solar quote from JD PRO Solar. Fill out this form today to get a free solar quote. The quote will include the current incentives available in your area.

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Interested in Solar Savings?

Fill Out This Form To Schedule Free In-Home Solar Evaluation, Full Design, and Complete Quote. Free In-Home Solar Evaluation, Full Design, and Complete Quote.

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Solar energy interconnection

Interconnection Service. What is Interconnection Service? ComEd Illinois.

What is an “Interconnection”?

An “Interconnection” is an electric connection between a utility’s energy grid and a private generation system that has the capability to send energy to a utility’s energy grid. Private generation systems that can send energy to a utility’s energy grid are also referred to as Distributed Generation (DG)

Do I have to submit an Interconnection Application for my private generation system?

  • Yes, an Interconnection Application is required for all private generation systems that can send energy to the smart grid. An Interconnection Application is needed to determine if:
    there is enough capacity on the smart grid for energy sent from your private generation system,
  • any work needs to be performed and the cost of that work, and
  • a private generation system is compatible with the smart grid.

If my energy is not supplied by ComEd, do I still need to submit an Interconnection Application to ComEd?

If ComEd is not your energy supplier, ComEd will still connect you to the smart grid and deliver energy to you when your private generation system does not produce all the energy you need. You will still need to submit an Interconnection Application to ComEd.solar energy interconnection

I’m installing additional generating capacity on my private generation system but not exceeding my inverter nameplate capacity, do I need to resubmit new Interconnection and Net Metering applications?

New Interconnection and Net Metering applications must be resubmitted any time a private generation system is being changed, replaced or upgraded causing the operational characteristics to change (e.g., kW size, inverter type, etc.).

For more information, please email Interconnect@ComEd.com.

How do I start the Interconnection Application process?

You can start by visiting ComEd.com/Interconnection to access ComEd’s Interconnection Application. At the bottom of the Distribution < 10,000 KVA page, you can find a link to submit the Interconnection Application.

ComEd recommends completing the Interconnection Application online to expedite the application process; however, forms are available for download and can be emailed, faxed or mailed to the address below:

Website: https://secure.comed.com/ContractorConnect/

Email: interconnect@ComEd.com

Address:
ComEd
Attn: Interconnect Services Department
2 Lincoln, 9th Floor
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181

Fax: (630) 437-2354

Can the application be downloaded and mailed to ComEd instead of using the online tool?

Yes. Downloaded applications can be mailed to the address below:

ComEd
Attn: Interconnect Services Department
2 Lincoln Center, 9th Floor
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181

However, ComEd recommends completing the Interconnection Application online to reduce paper use and expedite the application process.

How long is the application process and how is the application fee determined?

Interconnection Applications are classified by the size and type of generating system being installed per Illinois Administrative Code 466. Each level of Interconnection has a different review process time and fee:

Level 1: 25 kW or less, lab-certified, inverter-based DG facility, approximately 22 business days, $50.00

Level 2: over 25 kW but 5 MW or less, lab-certified DG facility, approximately 65 business days, $100.00 plus $1.00/kVA

Level 3: over 5 MW but 10 MW or less, the DG facility does not export power, approximately 75 business days, $500.00 plus $2.00/kVA

Level 4: 10 MW or less, that does not qualify for Levels 1 through 3, approximately 130-145 business days, $1,000 plus $2.00 /kVA

*If the generating system exceeds 10 MW, refer to Illinois Administrative Code 467, approximately 170-190 days.

The Net Metering application review process is 10 business days from receipt of a complete application. If ComEd is not your energy supplier, you can apply to participate in Net Metering with your energy supplier.

Can payments be mailed into ComEd?

Yes. Please send payment via check or money order payable to “ComEd” to the following address (do not send cash):

ComEd
Attn: Interconnect Services Department
2 Lincoln Center, 9th Floor
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181

Why could my Interconnection Application be delayed or denied?

An Interconnection Application could be delayed or denied if required information is incomplete or missing, documents are unsigned, or any required payments are not included.

Where do I find the Certificate of Compliance?

The Certificate of Compliance can be found on a nationally recognized testing laboratory’s website such as Underwriters Laboratory (UL). Download the certificate from the website and attach it to the application electronically (or mail in the certificate with the application if you are not completing an electronic application).

If the inverter is UL-approved, why do I need the Certificate of Compliance?

The State of Illinois follows the UL-1741 testing standard for inverters, which requires the Certificate of Compliance to verify the inverter has been tested and will operate as intended.

Where do I find the Technical Specification Sheet?

The Technical Specification Sheet can be found with the inverter’s instruction manual. It can also be found on the inverter manufacturer’s website. The Technical Specification Sheet must be submitted with the Interconnection Application.

Do I need to install an external disconnect switch to interconnect my private generation system?

ComEd does not require an External Disconnect Switch (EDS) for single phase, self-contained services up to 240 volts, and a maximum of 200 amperes. An EDS is required for all other service types, including single phase self-contained greater than 240 volts, single phase self-contained greater than 200 amperes, three-phase self-contained, and transformer-rated services.

What if I’m using micro-inverters, is an Interconnection Application required?

An Interconnection Application is required for all inverter-based generation systems, including micro-inverters. On the application, enter the kW output value shown on one of the micro-inverter nameplates and the number of micro-inverters utilized in the generation system (1kW = 1000 watts). Where the application asks for the total capacity of the generation system, including the total nameplate capacity in kW (i.e., the sum of all nameplate ratings) of all micro-inverters.

Can I operate my private generation system prior to receiving the final written Authorization to Operate?

No. You cannot operate your private generation system until:

(1) your Interconnection Application has been approved by ComEd,

(2) you have submitted a Certificate of Completion to ComEd in accordance with Illinois Administrative Code Title 83 Part 466 and have received a signed Certificate of Completion from ComEd, and

(3) you have satisfied all requirements as stated in Rider POGNM.

When do I submit the Appendix B, Certificate of Completion?

You can submit Appendix B, Certificate of Completion once.

The Interconnection Application has been approved
The generation system has been installed, livened, tested and final inspection (if required) has been completed by your municipality.

Will my system produce energy during a power outage?

For safety reasons, a private generating system’s inverter that is connected to the smart grid is designed to shut down automatically when a power outage occurs

Does my private generation system need to be inspected by my municipality?

Please contact your municipality to determine if a final inspection is required. If an electrical inspection is not required, please note “Final electrical inspection not required” on your Appendix B, Certificate of Completion.

What if I move into a property that has an existing private generation system installed?

If you move into a home or business with a private generation system already installed, you can participate in Net Metering by submitting a Net Metering Application. You do not need to submit a new Interconnection Application.

For more information, email NetMetering@ComEd.com or call 800-TALK-GEN (800-825-5436).

net-metering

What is net metering? Do you have questions about Net Metering? ComEd Illinois

What is net metering?

When you participate in Net Metering, you can lower your energy bill by producing some of the energy you use with an eligible, private solar energy system installed at your facility. Your energy bills will reflect the net amount of energy you use (i.e., the amount of energy delivered to you minus the excess energy sent to the smart grid). “Net Metering” also allows you to receive Net Metering credits on your energy bill when you produce more energy than you use.

What are net metering credits?

Any net metering credits that appear on your energy bill reflect the value of the excess energy sent to the smart grid.net-metering

Can I participate in Net Metering?

You are eligible to participate in Net Metering if you own or operate an eligible, private solar energy system less than or equal to 2,000kW (AC-rated) for your own use. To participate in Net Metering, your system should be sized to meet some or all your energy needs and cannot produce more than 110% of your most recent 12-months of energy usage.

How can I participate in Net Metering?

You can participate in Net Metering after receiving approval of your Net Metering application and a signed Certificate of Completion from ComEd confirming your system has been installed. If ComEd is your energy supplier, you can apply to participate in Net Metering at ComEd.com/NetMetering. Scroll down to the Apply for Net Metering page section and choose the Net Metering Application. If ComEd is not your energy supplier, you can participate in Net Metering by contacting and submitting an application to your energy supplier.

What type of meter is needed to participate in Net Metering?

To participate in Net Metering, the ComEd meter at your location must be capable of measuring the amount of energy we deliver to you and the excess amount you sent to the smart grid. ComEd will verify the type of meter currently installed at your location. If you have a smart meter, you will not need a new meter. If you do not have a smart meter, the meter at your location will be exchanged for a smart meter. You can determine if you have a smart meter by looking at the meter number on your energy bill. If you have a smart meter, the meter number has nine digits and begins with “2.”

Does a smart meter measure the total amount of energy I produce?

No. A smart meter records data on two channels. Channel 1 measures the amount of energy delivered to you. Channel 2 measures the amount of excess energy you sent to the smart grid. When you participate in Net Metering, you are charged only for the net amount of energy you use during each monthly billing period (i.e., the amount of energy delivered to you minus the excess energy you sent to the smart grid). And, you will receive credits on your energy bill when you produce more energy than you need.

Are there any charges for the meter needed to participate in Net Metering?

If you have one electric meter at your location, there is no incremental charge for the smart meter which is needed to participate in Net Metering. If you have more than one electric meter, there may be additional charges under the provisions of Rider ML – Meter-Related Facilities Lease

How long does it take to get a new meter installed?

If a smart meter needs to be installed, it may take up to five business days for installation after the Interconnection and Net Metering applications have been approved and the Interconnection process has been completed. For timeframes on this process, see the Acquire & Finance section below.

Where do I obtain ComEd’s Net Metering application?

ComEd’s Net Metering application is available at ComEd.com/NetMetering. Scroll down to the Apply for Net Metering page section and choose the Net Metering Application.

ComEd recommends completing the Net Metering Application online to expedite the application process; however, forms are available for download and can be emailed, faxed or mailed to the address below:

Website: https://interconnect.comed.com/#/login/

Email: netmetering@ComEd.com

Address:
ComEd
Attn: Net Metering Coordinator
Three Lincoln Center, 2nd Floor
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181

Fax: 1-630-576-6353

Which application should I submit first?

You can submit the Interconnection Application and a Net Metering Application at the same time. However, the Interconnection Application must be approved first. If the Interconnection Application is not completed and approved, you will not be able to participate in Net Metering. Conditional approval for Net Metering will be withdrawn if an Interconnection Application is not submitted within 30 business days after receiving notice of the conditional approval of the Net Metering Application.

What if my energy supplier does not offer Net Metering?

Energy suppliers doing business in the State of Illinois are required to provide Net Metering for their customers.

What if my energy is not supplied by ComEd and I want to participate in Net Metering?

If ComEd is not your energy supplier, you can participate in Net Metering by contacting and submitting an application to your energy supplier.

Can I participate in ComEd’s Hourly Pricing Program and Net Metering at the same time?

Yes, but separate applications must be completed. Visit ComEd.com/HourlyPricing for more information about ComEd’s Hourly Pricing program.

What is the largest private generation system I can install and participate in Net Metering?

The maximum size of the generator cannot have a rated capacity of more than 2,000 kW to participate in Net Metering. Your private generation system should be sized to meet some or all your energy needs and not produce more energy than you need annually.

Are there other factors that can impact solar energy production?

Energy production from solar energy systems can fluctuate because of several factors—clouds, darkness and dirty panels all limit energy production. Your private solar generation system may not produce all the energy you need. Prior to installation, understand how your system will operate under varying conditions, and how these conditions can impact your energy bill.

If I produce more energy than I use, what Net Metering credits do I receive on my energy bill?

When you produce more energy than you use, you will receive net metering credits on your bill that lower energy supply and other kWh-based charges. The customer charge and standard meter charges apply to all bills and are not affected by net metering credits. Net metering credits are determined based on the price you pay for energy from your supplier and whether you have elected to receive the ComEd DG Rebate.

  • Customers purchasing energy from ComEd at hourly prices will receive monetary net metering credits based on the price of power during the hours excess energy is produced.
  • Customers purchasing energy from ComEd at fixed-prices will receive net metering credits measured in kWh which can be carried over to subsequent billing periods until the end of the annual period specified on their Net Metering Election Form.
  • Customers purchasing energy from another supplier should check with their supplier to determine how net metering credits that lower energy supply charges will be provided.
    If you elect to receive the ComEd Distributed Generation Rebate (DG Rebate), you will only receive net metering credits on your bill that lower energy supply charges— net metering credits will NOT lower other kWh-based charges such as distribution and transmission service charges.

Why does my energy bill still show charges if I have net metering credits?

The customer charge and standard meter charges apply to all energy bills and are not affected by credits you receive on your energy bill when you produce more energy than you need.

If ComEd is not my energy supplier and I produce more energy than I use in an annual period, will ComEd pay me for the excess energy?

If you switch from one energy supplier to another supplier, switch from ComEd to another energy supplier, or from another energy supplier to ComEd prior to your annual period, any credits remaining on your account will expire without reimbursement.

Will I get credit when I produce more energy than I have used when I switch from one energy supplier to another supplier?

If you switch from one energy supplier to another supplier, any excess net metering credits on your account will expire without reimbursement.

Can I continue to participate in Net Metering if I move to another energy supplier?

When you switch your energy supplier, including to and from ComEd, you must contact your new energy supplier to submit a Net Metering Application with that supplier.

Does ComEd offer solar rebates?

Yes, non-residential Net Metering customers and entities who own and operate community solar energy systems, with a system less than or equal to 2,000 kW (AC-rated), are eligible for a ComEd Distributed Generation Rebate (DG Rebate) of $250/kW (DC-rated nameplate capacity).

  • Non-residential Net Metering customers who have installed a private solar energy system prior to June 1st, 2017 are eligible to receive the DG Rebate.
  • Non-residential Net Metering customers and entities who own and operate community solar energy systems who have installed a system after June 1st, 2017 are required to have a smart inverter that can communicate with ComEd, and help support the smart grid when needed, through ComEd-specified settings. (Systems installed prior to June 1st, 2017 not required to have a smart inverter.)
    If you elect to receive the ComEd DG Rebate, you will only receive net metering credits on your bill that lower energy supply charges—net metering credits will NOT lower other kWh-based charges such as distribution and transmission service charges.

The ComEd DG Rebate is not available to residential customers at this time.

What is a Solar Renewable Energy Credit (SREC)?

A SREC represents the environmental benefits of producing 1,000 kWh of energy by a solar energy system. The value of SRECs is measured in $/MWh (1 MWh = 1,000 kWh).

Will ComEd purchase my SRECs?

ComEd will purchase SRECs through contracts awarded by the Illinois Power Agency (IPA). SREC prices will be established by the IPA and depend on the type of solar energy system: < 10 kW private solar energy systems, 10 kW to 2 MW private solar energy systems and large-scale community solar energy systems. ComEd will purchase SRECs through 15-year contracts and contract prices will not change during the period of the contract.

  • SRECs produced by private solar energy systems smaller than 10 kW will be purchased through a one-time initial payment.
  • SRECs produced by systems larger than 10 kW will be purchased through payments made during the first five years of the contract.
    Additional information about how to apply for a SREC contract is expected to be provided by the IPA later this year.

 

 

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