To the Editor: Net-metering allows retail electric customers to generate power from renewable sources and to send surplus energy into the grid. Producers are paid for that energy at a rate set by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) This is about half the retail rate, 8¢/kwh.
The net-metering “cap,” or maximum generation allowed, is one megawatt (MW), a hardship for businesses and municipalities that would like to take advantage of the millions in savings renewable energy provides. Many require generation of three+ MW to meet needs, or wish to supply power to multiple locations. Under current law, any power generated in excess of one MW is forfeited to the utility.
A new net-metering bill is coming to the House floor, HB 1218, co-sponsored by five Democrats and five Republicans. This bill has important advantages over previous net-metering bills:
• The bill initially raises the cap from 1MW to 3MW, allowing for a gradual increase in projects. In 2022, the cap increases to just under 5MW, allowing industry planning time for larger projects.
• The bill empowers the PUC to monitor projects to be certain there is no cost shifting of expenses to ratepayers, increasing rates.
HB 1218 allows businesses, industry, and municipalities to invest in cheap, renewable electricity, stabilizing energy costs long term. Implementation of HB 1218 also provides important climate benefits, stimulates New Hampshire’s renewable energy industry, and will sizably reduce the import of costly regional electricity.
Please share this information and support this good bill!
Rep. Chris Balch