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E-M:/ MI News: MPSC Approves Net Metering

------------------------------------------------------------------------- Enviro-Mich message from Phil Shepard ------------------------------------------------------------------------- -------- Original Message --------
Subject: [Sustainable-ed] FW: MPSC Approves Agreement Implementing Statewide Net Metering Program that will Allow Customers to Put Excess Electricity Back on the Grid
Date: Tue, 29 Mar 2005 16:21:27 -0500
From: Sarver, John H (DLEG) <jhsarve@michigan.gov>
To: Sustain-Ed (Sustain-Ed) <sustainable-ed@urbanoptions.org>

-----Original Message-----
From: mpsc_press 
Sent: Tuesday, March 29, 2005 2:11 PM
Subject: MPSC Approves Agreement Implementing Statewide Net Metering
Program that will Allow Customers to Put Excess Electricity Back on the

Contact: Judy Palnau (517) 241-3323

MPSC Approves Agreement Implementing Statewide Net Metering Program that
will Allow Customers to Put Excess Electricity Back on the Grid
Mar 29, 2005

     March 29, 2005

     The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved an
amended consensus agreement that implements a voluntary statewide net
metering program for a minimum of five years.  Utilities that signed the
agreement have until April 28 to file their proposed tariffs.

     Net metering occurs when customers produce electric energy in
excess of their needs, providing power back to the serving utility and
permitting the customer to receive a credit for power they supply to the
system.  The program covers all "renewable energy source"; electric
generating technologies as defined in Public Act 141:  solar, wind,
geothermal, biomass, including waste-to-energy and landfill gas or

     "Today's announcement is an important step in encouraging the use
of renewable energy sources,"; said MPSC Chairman J. Peter Lark.
"Residential and small business customers of Michigan electric utilities
will be able to put any excess electricity generated back on the
electric grid.  It's like running the meter backwards.";

     The MPSC on May 18, 2004 issued an order calling for the
development of a net metering program.  Investor-owned and cooperative
electric utilities as well as MPSC staff on Dec. 3, 2004 filed an
application seeking approval of a consensus agreement for a voluntary,
statewide net metering program.  The MPSC on Dec. 21, 2004 issued an
order allowing comments to be filed on the consensus agreement.
Twenty-seven comments were received.

     In its order today, the MPSC approved an amended version of the
consensus agreement.  It includes a definition of net metering; basic
provisions for utility cost recovery; rates and charges covering
customer billing and credits for net excess generation; the total
program size for each utility; the maximum size of eligible electric
generators; eligible generator technologies; customer application fees
and interconnection standards; duration of the program; utility
reporting requirements; and program monitoring and evaluation.  Based on
comments filed, the Commission rejected a provision in the agreement
that would have required that all renewable energy certification
associated with the customer's generation be owned by the utility.

     Under the agreement, net-metered customers will be credited for net
excess generation (NEG) at the utility's retail price of generation.
Any credits will be carried over from month to month, limited to a 12
billing-month cycle.  At the end of each 12 billing-month cycle,
cumulative NEG credits, if any, may be retained by the utility and the
customer's credit reset to zero.  The value of any generation credits
retained by the utility will be used to offset net metering programming
costs, thus benefiting net metering customers.

     Utilities are required to report by June 30 each year all data
needed to monitor and evaluate its net metering program for the previous
12 months.  The data will be incorporated into the annual report to the
MPSC by the Michigan Renewable Energy Program (MREP) Collaborative
working group.  After the fourth year of the program the MREP
Collaborative will submit a report to the MPSC evaluating the program
and making recommendations for the future of net metering programming in

     Information on MREP activities is available on the MPSC Web site:

     "Using renewable energy sources makes Michigan that much less
dependent on traditional fossil fuels,"; said Lark.  "The whole state
benefits because we reduce the demand for electricity produced at plants
using fossil fuels.  Every kilowatt of electricity generated by
renewable energy is a kilowatt that does not produce harmful

     The following utilities signed the consensus agreement:  Alpena
Power Company, Indiana Michigan Power Company, Edison Sault Electric
Company, Upper Peninsula Power Company, Wisconsin Public Service
Corporation, Wisconsin Electric Power Company, Northern States Power
Company, Consumers Energy Company, The Detroit Edison Company, the
Michigan Electric Cooperative Association, and the Michigan Electric and
Gas Association.

     The MPSC is an agency within the Department of Labor &amp; Economic

     Case No. U-14346

     # # #

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