TITLE XXXIV
PUBLIC UTILITIES

CHAPTER 362-A
LIMITED ELECTRICAL ENERGY PRODUCERS ACT

Section 362-A:9

    362-A:9 Net Energy Metering. –
I. Standard tariffs providing for net energy metering shall be made available to eligible customer-generators by each electric distribution utility in conformance with net metering rules adopted and orders issued by the commission. Each net energy metering tariff shall be identical, with respect to rates, rate structure, and charges, to the tariff under which a customer-generator would otherwise take default generation supply service from the distribution utility. Such tariffs shall be available on a first-come, first-served basis within each electric utility service area under the jurisdiction of the commission until such time as the total rated generating capacity owned or operated by eligible customer-generators totals a number equal to 100 megawatts, with 50 megawatts of the 100 megawatts allocated to the 4 electric distribution utilities that were subject to the commission's jurisdiction in 2010 multiplied by each such utility's percentage share of the total 2010 annual coincident peak energy demand distributed by those 4 utilities, and 50 megawatts of the 100 megawatts allocated to the state's 3 investor-owned electric distribution utilities, multiplied by each such utility's percentage share of the total 2010 annual coincident peak energy demand distributed by those 3 utilities, all to be determined by the commission and to be utilized by eligible customer-generators located within each such utilities' service territory. Eighty percent of each utility's share of the 50 megawatts shall be apportioned to facilities with a total generating capacity of not more than 100 kilowatts and 20 percent to facilities with a total generating capacity in excess of 100 kilowatts, but no greater than one megawatt. The 50 megawatts of capacity shall be made available to eligible customer-generators until such time as commission approved alternative net metering tariffs approved by the commission become available. No more than 4 megawatts of such total rated generating capacity shall be from a combined heat and power system as defined in RSA 362-A:1-a, I-d.

[Paragraph I-a repealed by 2016, 33:3 effective as provided by 2016, 33:4.]


I-a. No person, owner, developer, installer of an eligible customer-generator facility, business organization, or any subsidiary thereof, shall reserve capacity space in the net metering interconnection queue of more than 20 percent of the total net metering utility-specific allocation pursuant to this section, and the creation of multiple business organizations, including a person, as defined in RSA 366:1, I, by the same shall not defeat this requirement. On a weekly basis each utility shall make public on its website its total net metering allocation, its reserved net metering capacity, and its installed and operating net metering capacity. For project applications of greater than 100 kilowatts, each utility net metering interconnection queue application shall include a certification of compliance with the 20 percent requirement, all persons involved in such an application shall sign the certification of compliance, and no application shall be processed where one or more persons involved in the application did not sign the certification of compliance.
II. Competitive electricity suppliers registered under RSA 374-F:7 and municipal or county aggregators under RSA 53-E may determine the terms, conditions, and prices under which they agree to provide generation supply to and credit, as an offset to supply, or purchase the generation output exported to the distribution grid from eligible customer-generators. The commission may require appropriate disclosure of such terms, conditions, and prices or credits. Such output shall be accounted for as a reduction to the customer-generators' electricity supplier's wholesale load obligation for energy supply as a load service entity, net of any applicable line loss adjustments, as approved by the commission. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed as limiting or otherwise interfering with the provisions or authority for municipal or county aggregators under RSA 53-E, including, but not limited to, the terms and conditions for net metering.
III. Metering shall be done in accordance with normal metering practices. A single net meter that shows the customer's net energy usage by measuring both the inflow and outflow of electricity internally shall be the extent of metering that is required at facilities with a total peak generating capacity of not more than 100 kilowatts. A bi-directional metering system that records the total amount of electricity that flows in each direction from the customer premises, either instantaneously or over intervals of an hour or less, shall be required at facilities with a total peak generating capacity of more than 100 kilowatts. Customer-generators shall not be required to pay for the installation of net meters, but shall pay for the installation of all bi-directional metering systems as outlined in utility interconnection tariffs or rules.
IV. (a) For facilities with a total peak generating capacity of not more than 100 kilowatts, when billing a customer-generator under a net energy metering tariff that is not time-based, the utility shall apply the customer's net energy usage when calculating all charges that are based on kilowatt hour usage. Customer net energy usage shall equal the kilowatt hours supplied to the customer over the electric distribution system minus the kilowatt hours generated by the customer-generator and fed into the electric distribution system over a billing period.
(b) For facilities with a total peak generating capacity of more than 100 kilowatts, the customer-generator shall pay all applicable charges on all kilowatt hours supplied to the customer over the electric distribution system, less a credit on default service charges equal to the metered energy generated by the customer-generator and fed into the electric distribution system over a billing period.
V. When a customer-generator's net energy usage is negative (more electricity is fed into the distribution system than is received) over a billing period, such surplus shall either:
(a) Be credited to the customer-generator's account on an equivalent basis for use in subsequent billing cycles as a credit against the customer's net energy usage or bill in a manner consistent with either subparagraph IV(a) or IV(b), as applicable; or
(b) Except as provided in paragraph VI, the customer-generator may elect to be paid or credited by the electric distribution utility for its excess generation at rates that are equal to the utility's avoided costs for energy and capacity to provide default service as determined by the commission consistent with the requirements of the Public Utilities Regulatory Policy Act of 1978 (PURPA). The commission shall determine reasonable conditions for such an election, including the frequency of payment, provided that the commission requires the option of payment at least quarterly, and how often a customer-generator may choose this option versus the option in subparagraph (a).
V-a. A customer-generator subject to the alternative net metering tariff adopted by the commission in order 26,029 issued on June 23, 2017, and subsequent orders issued thereafter in docket DE 16-576, may elect to receive a payment from the distribution utility either on an annual basis in an amount equal to the accrued monetary bill credit balance that exceeds $100 as of the end of the March billing period, or on a quarterly basis in an amount equal to the amount of the accrued monetary bill credit balance that exceeds $25 as of the end of the most recent billing period preceding such quarterly payment. The costs reasonably incurred by a utility pursuant to this paragraph shall be recoverable.
VI. Instead of the option in subparagraph V(b), an electric distribution utility providing default service to customer-generators may voluntarily elect, annually, on a generic basis, by notification to the commission, to purchase or credit such excess generation from customer-generators at a rate that is equal to the generation supply component of the applicable default service rate, provided that payment is issued at least as often as whenever the value of such credit, in excess of amounts owed by the customer-generator, is greater than $50.
VII. A distribution utility may perform an annual calculation to determine the net effect this section had on its default service and distribution revenues and expenses in the prior calendar year. The method of performing the calculation and applying the results, as well as a reconciliation mechanism to collect or credit any such net effects with appropriate carrying charges and credits applied, shall be determined by the commission.
VIII. Notwithstanding other provisions of this section, the commission may establish, on a utility-specific or generic basis, a methodology by which customer-generators may be provided service under time-based, net energy metering tariffs. The methodology shall specify how a customer's energy usage and generation shall be metered, how net energy usage shall be calculated and any applicable charges applied, and how excess generation shall be credited, consistent with size limits and the terms and conditions and intent of this section and other requirements of state and federal law.
IX. Renewable energy credits shall remain the property of the customer-generator until such credits are sold or transferred. If an electric distribution utility acquires renewable energy credits from a customer-generator in conjunction with purchasing excess generation, it may apply such generation and credits to its renewable energy source default service option under RSA 374-F:3, V(f).
X. The department shall adopt rules, pursuant to RSA 541-A, to:
(a) Establish reasonable interconnection requirements for safety, reliability, and power quality as it determines the public interest requires. Such rules shall not exceed applicable test standards of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) or Underwriters Laboratory (UL); and
(b) Implement the provisions of this section.
XI. The department may by order, after notice and hearing:
(a) Waive any of the limitations set forth in this chapter for targeted net energy metering arrangements that are part of a utility strategy to minimize distribution or other costs; and
(b) Implement any utility-specific provisions authorized under this section.
XII. Once the department has established standards for equipment used by eligible customer-generators, electric distribution utilities shall not require any additional standards or testing for transmission equipment as a condition of net energy metering.
XIII. Customer-generators shall be responsible for all costs associated with interconnection with the distribution system.
XIV. (a) A customer-generator may elect to become a group host for the purpose of reducing or otherwise controlling the energy costs of a group of customers who are not customer-generators, except that a political subdivision, as defined in RSA 362-A:1-a, II-c, or the owner of a facility described in RSA 362-A:9, XX, that is a customer-generator, may participate as a group member. The group of customers shall be located within the service territory of the same electric distribution utility as the host. The host shall provide a list of the group members to the commission and the electric distribution utility and shall certify that all members of the group have executed an agreement with the host regarding the utilization of kilowatt hours produced by the eligible facility and that the total historic annual load of the group members together with the host exceeds the projected annual output of the host's facility. The department shall verify that these group requirements have been met and shall register the group host. The department shall establish the process for registering hosts, including periodic re-registration, and the process by which changes in membership are allowed and administered. Net metering tariffs under this section shall not be made available to a customer-generator group host until such host is registered by the department.
(b) Except as provided in subparagraph (c), the provisions of this section shall apply to a group host as a customer-generator.
(c)(1) Notwithstanding paragraph V, a group host shall be paid for its surplus generation at the end of each billing cycle at rates consistent with the credit the group host receives relative to its own net metering under either subparagraph IV(a) or (b) or alternative tariffs that may be applicable pursuant to paragraph XVI. Alternatively, a group host may elect to receive credits on the customer electric bill for each member and the host, with the utility being allowed the most cost-effective method of doing so according to an amount or percentage specified for each member on PUC form 909.09 (Application to Register or Re-register as a Host), along with a 3 cent per kwh addition from July 1, 2019 through July 1, 2021 and a 2.5 cent per kwh addition thereafter for low-moderate income community solar projects, as defined in RSA 362-F:2, X-a. The cent per kwh addition to the credit provided to any particular low-moderate income community solar project shall be in the amount in effect on the date that the commission issues a group host registration number for that project. The amount of the cent per kwh addition shall be grandfathered in accordance with the grandfathering provisions of the net metering tariff for customer-generators applicable to the project as in effect on the date the commission issues the project a group host registration number.
(2) On or before July 1, 2022, the department shall report on the costs and benefits of such an addition and the development of the market for low-moderate income community solar projects, and provide a recommendation on whether the addition shall be increased or decreased. The department shall report on the costs and benefits of low-moderate income community solar projects, as defined in RSA 362-F:2, X-a on or before June 1, 2020. The department shall authorize at least 2 new low-moderate income community solar projects, as defined in RSA 362-F:2, X-a, each year in each utility's service territory beginning January 1, 2020. On an annual basis, for all group host systems except for residential systems with an interconnected capacity under 15 kilowatts, the electric distribution utility shall calculate a payment adjustment if the host's surplus generation for which it was paid is greater than the group's total electricity usage during the same time period. The adjustment shall be such that the resulting compensation to the host for the amount that exceeded the group's total usage shall be at the utility's avoided cost or its default service rate in accordance with subparagraph V(b) or paragraph VI or alternative tariffs that may be applicable pursuant to paragraph XVI. The utility shall pay or bill the host accordingly.
(d) The electric distribution utilities shall establish a list of potential low-moderate income residential customers who qualify to benefit from the low-moderate income community solar addition. This list shall consist of residents who have enrolled in or are on the waitlist for the state Electric Assistance Program.
(e) Within 90 days of the effective date of this subparagraph, the department of energy shall develop a process by which community solar developers can apply for designation as a community solar project. Such projects designate their production for the benefit of households on the list required in subparagraph (d). Such projects will qualify for the low-moderate income solar addition as established in subparagraph (c) and shall specify the amount of on-bill credit they can offer to low-moderate income homeowners. Annually, the number of projects designated as low-moderate income community solar shall not exceed a total nameplate capacity rating of 6 megawatts in the aggregate. If more than 6 megawatts of projects apply for designation, the department of energy shall select the projects that offer the largest on-bill credit.
(f) Each year, the department of energy, in consultation with the electric distribution utilities, shall select a means by which to enroll households as off-takers for these low-moderate income community solar projects. Customers shall be enrolled on an opt-out basis, notified by mail of their enrollment, and informed of the details of the project from which they are receiving credit. Once enrolled, such customers shall receive on-bill credits until such time as they no longer qualify for the Electric Assistance Program, or until they opt out from receiving credits.
(g) All reasonable and prudently-incurred costs incurred by the electric distribution utilities related to this program, including but not limited to, costs of implementation, billing, and administrative activities, shall not be borne by the utilities, but shall be recovered from customers.
(h) Utility owned projects that are designated as community solar projects shall not count against the limitation on the maximum allowed distributed energy resources as established by RSA 374-G:4.
(i) Nothing in this chapter shall preclude low-moderate income solar community projects from enrolling customers through any other method besides the process described in subparagraphs (d)-(f). A description of any alternative method used shall be filed with department of energy.
(j) The department is authorized to petition the commission to assess fines against, revoke the registration of, and prohibit from doing business in the state, any group host which violates the requirements of this paragraph and rules adopted for this paragraph pursuant to paragraph X. The commission is authorized to grant or deny such petitions.
XV. Standard tariffs that are available to eligible customer-generators under this section shall terminate on December 31, 2040 and such customer-generators shall transition to tariffs that are in effect at that time.
XVI. (a) The commission, through an adjudicative proceeding, shall continue to develop and periodically review new alternative net metering tariffs, which may include other regulatory mechanisms and tariffs for customer-generators, and determine whether and to what extent such tariffs should be limited in their availability within each electric distribution utility's service territory. In developing such alternative tariffs and any limitations in their availability, the commission shall consider: balancing the interests of customer-generators with those of electric utility ratepayers by maximizing any net benefits while minimizing any negative cost shifts from customer-generators to other customers and from other customers to customer-generators; the costs and benefits of customer-generator facilities; an avoidance of unjust and unreasonable cost shifting; rate effects on all customers; alternative rate structures, including time-based tariffs pursuant to paragraph VIII; whether there should be a limitation on the amount of generating capacity eligible for such tariffs; the size of facilities eligible to receive net metering tariffs: timely recovery of lost revenue by the utility using an automatic rate adjustment mechanism; and electric distribution utilities' administrative processes required to implement such tariffs and related regulatory mechanisms. The commission may waive or modify specific size limits and terms and conditions of service for net metering specified in paragraphs I, III, IV, V, and VI that it finds to be just and reasonable in the adoption of alternative tariffs for customer-generators. The commission may approve time and/or size limited pilots of alternative tariffs.
(b) Until such time as the commission adopts alternative net metering tariffs that expressly apply to customer-generators with a total peak generating capacity of greater than one megawatt pursuant to the criteria set forth in this paragraph, the provisions of commission order no. 26,029 issued on June 23, 2017 and subsequent orders applicable to large customer-generators shall be applicable to customer-generators of greater than one megawatt otherwise authorized by statute.
(c) Customer-generators of greater than one megawatt total peak generating capacity that are compensated for exports to the grid pursuant to subparagraph (b) prior to commission approval of net metering tariffs that expressly apply to such customer-generators shall have the voluntary option to switch to such expressly applicable new tariff under its terms but shall not be permitted to return to a prior tariff or net metering terms once they have switched.
XVII. The commission shall issue an order initially approving or adopting such alternative tariffs, which may be subject to change or adjustment from time to time, within 10 months of the effective date of this paragraph.
XVIII. If any utility reaches any cap for net metering under paragraph I before alternative tariffs are approved or adopted pursuant to paragraph XVII, eligible customer-generators may continue to interconnect under temporary net metering tariffs under the same terms and conditions as net metering under the 100 megawatt cap, except that such customer-generators shall transition to alternative tariffs once they are approved or adopted for their utility pursuant to paragraph XVII.
XIX. No person, owner, developer, or installer of an eligible customer-generator facility, business organization, or any subsidiary thereof, shall use any unfair method of competition or any unfair or deceptive act or practice in any way for projects involving net metering.
XX. A hydroelectric generator with a total peak generating capacity that is at or below the capacity eligibility requirements set forth in RSA 362-A:1-a, II-b and that first became operational before July 1, 2021 and that shares equipment or facilities with other generators or electric utility customers for interconnection to the electric grid, shall be eligible to participate in net energy metering as a customer-generator even if the aggregate capacity of the generators sharing equipment or facilities for interconnection to the electric grid exceeds the capacity eligibility requirements set forth in RSA 362-A:1-a, II-b. Such a hydroelectric generator shall be eligible to participate in net energy metering as a customer-generator based on its individual total peak generating capacity.
XXI. (a) The commission shall consider the question of whether or not exports to the grid by customer-generators taking default service should be accounted for as reduction to what would otherwise be the wholesale load obligation of the load serving entity providing default service absent such exports to the grid. The commission shall use its best efforts to resolve such question through an order in an adjudicated proceeding, which may be DE 16-576, issued no later than June 15, 2022.
(b) No generator of greater than one megawatt total peak generating capacity that first becomes operational after July 1, 2021 that elects to participate in net metering as otherwise authorized by statute shall be registered as a generator asset with ISO New England before June 30, 2022.
(c) A generator of greater than one megawatt total peak generating capacity that first became operational before July 1, 2021 that elects to participate in net metering as otherwise authorized by statute and that is registered with ISO New England as a generator asset may, at its discretion, retire from such participation in ISO New England wholesale markets.
XXII. No later than January 1, 2023, the electric distribution utilities shall publish on their websites a hosting capacity map showing the estimated maximum amount of distributed generation that can be accommodated on the distribution system at a given location under existing grid conditions and operations, without adversely impacting safety, power quality, reliability, or other operational criteria, and without requiring significant infrastructure upgrades. The maps shall provide relevant electrical information regarding the circuit and affiliated substation for each location, including interconnected and queued distributed generation, and shall be updated regularly.
XXIII. When the department of energy's distributed energy resource valuation study is completed and thereafter the public utilities commission opens a new proceeding that includes consideration of the adoption of net metering tariffs that apply to newly-constructed customer-generators with a total peak generating capacity of greater than one megawatt, the commission shall consider whether and when further changes should be made to the net metering tariff structure approved in order no. 26,029 issued on June 23, 2017, applicable to such newly-constructed customer-generators. Such consideration of net metering tariffs that apply to newly-constructed customer-generators with a total peak generating capacity of greater than one megawatt shall include but not be limited to whether or not the cost of compliance with the electric renewable portfolio standard, RSA 362-F, inclusive of prior period reconciliations, should be excluded from the monetary credit for exports to the grid, as well as whether or not the monetary credit should include compensation for services and value currently not compensated such as avoided transmission, distribution, and capacity costs and other grid services.

Source. 1998, 261:10. 2000, 148:1, 2. 2007, 174:2-4, eff. Aug. 17, 2007. 2010, 143:3, eff. Aug. 13, 2010. 2011, 168:3, eff. July 1, 2011. 2012, 59:1, eff. July 13, 2012. 2013, 266:2, eff. July 24, 2013. 2016, 31:3-5; 33:1, 2, eff. May 2, 2016; 33:3 eff. as provided by 2016, 33:4. 2017, 226:7, 8, eff. July 11, 2017. 2018, 112:1, eff. July 24, 2018; 212:2, eff. Aug. 7, 2018; 212:3, eff. July 24, 2018 at 12:01 a.m. 2019, 271:2, eff. July 1, 2019. 2020, 21:1, eff. Sept. 15, 2020. 2021, 91:233, 234, eff. July 1, 2021; 228:2, Pt. II, Secs. 1-3, eff. Aug. 26, 2021; 228:2, Pt. III, Sec. 1, eff. Oct. 25, 2021. 2022, 152:1, 2, eff. Aug. 6, 2022; 308:1, eff. Aug. 30, 2022; 328:1, 3, eff. Sept. 6, 2022; 329:1, eff. Sept. 6, 2022.