|Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics
New Hampshire requires all utilities selling electricity in the state to offer net metering to customers who own or operate systems up to one megawatt (MW) of capacity that generates electricity using solar, wind, geothermal, hydro, tidal, wave, biomass, landfill gas, bio-oil, or biodiesel. Combined heat and power (CHP) systems that use natural gas, wood pellets, hydrogen, propane, or heating oil are also eligible.*
System Capacity Limit
The New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission’s (PUC) rules for net metering distinguish between small customer-generators (up to 100 kilowatts) and large customer-generators (greater than 100 kW and up to 1 MW). The rules vary slightly for each customer type. The system capacity is 5 MW for group net-metered systems with a municipal host only.
Net Excess Generation
Net excess generation (NEG) is carried forward indefinitely to the customer’s next bill as a kilowatt-hour (kWh) credit. Customers with NEG at the end of an annual period may elect to receive payment for NEG at the utility’s avoided cost rate. The utility may also voluntarily elect to purchase or credit excess generation at the applicable default service rate, but only if the payment is issued whenever the value of the credit (in excess of the customer owed amount) is greater than $50.
For systems up to 100 kW, a single meter that measures both the inflow and outflow of electricity internally is used. A bi-directional meter is used for larger systems. Utilities may install additional meters at their own expense.
Each utility’s net metering tariff must be identical, with respect to rates, rate structure, and charges, to the tariff under which the customer would otherwise take default service from the utility. The PUC is authorized to develop a methodology for net metering under a time-of-use tariff.
For systems up to 100 kW, net excess generation is credited at a rate equal to 100% of the retail energy and transmission charges plus 25% of the distribution charge, and for systems greater than 100 kW, this rate is equal to the energy charge only.
Renewable Energy Credit
Renewable energy credits (RECs) are owned by the customer. However, RECs associated with the net excess generation purchased by the utility at the end of an annual billing period may be claimed by the utility.
Net Metering Alternative
The net metering alternative tariff applies to customer-generators receiving net metering capacity allocation starting September 1, 2017. Customer generators subject to the standard net metering tariff (subject to end on December 31, 2040) can switch to the alternative tariff, but may not go back to the standard. Small customer-generators subject to the alternative must have bi-directional meters installed. Under the alternative tariff, customers may choose to receive a payment from the utility annually equal to the accumulated monetary bill credit balance exceeding $100 as of the end of the March billing period. Customers may also receive the credit quarterly equal to the accumulated monetary bill credit balance exceeding $25 at the end of the most recent billing before quarterly payments are chosen. For current net metering tariffs (standard and alternative), click here.
*CHP systems up to 30 kW must have a system efficiency of at least 80% to be eligible. CHP systems greater than 30 kW and up to 1 MW must have a fuel system efficiency of at least 65%.