The majority of Harvest Energy solar and wind systems are grid-tied systems. These systems are connected directly to your utility company’s electric grid that will store your energy when excess is produced. Additionally, your home or business will still be powered by the utility when the system is not producing power. Recent advances in technology have allowed more ease and simplicity in use of utility connected renewable energy systems. Harvest Energy Solutions will work to help you with all aspects of your installation including permitting and interconnection. (See off-grid solar for battery storage systems).
Your first step will be to contact your utility and ask for an interconnection agreement. Net metering is a contract with your utility to use their meter and allows you to run excess power into the grid. Many utilities have a simple interconnection agreement for small self-generators. Harvest Energy can assist in locating the appropriate utility connections for your needs.
United States Federal law through the Public Utilities Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA) of 1978, requires states to connect with and purchase power from renewable energy systems. Many utilities offer net metering, which allows customers send excess electricity back to the utility when their system produces more power than they need. Customers can then get power from the utility when their system doesn’t produce enough power. In effect, net metering allows the interconnected customer to use the electrical grid as a storage battery. This helps customers get higher (retail) value for more of their self-generated electricity (not the surcharges). Standard net metering will generally apply a credit to the customers account for the surplus energy produced. In practice, net metering and net billing vary from state to state and utility to utility- based on rules for such arrangements defined by the state. For information about your particular state visit the Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE).
Interconnection agreements vary from each utility or co-op, but all will most likely require specific safety information about the renewable energy system and should outline the type of net-metering agreement you have with them. Harvest Energy products that connect to the grid are UL listed and comply with anti-islanding laws that require the system to shut down in the event of an electric grid interruption. You may be the first person within your utility asking for an interconnection agreement for wind and solar. We encourage to you work with the experts at Harvest Energy to ensure you have the support you need should questions arise. Most utilities will require an on-site inspection at the completion of installation. By developing your relationship with the utility early, you will be ready at the time of install for connection to your utility grid.
All utilities and electricity co-ops have unique programs – we can assist in locating the appropriate connection information to meet your needs.