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Duke seeks net metering program extension in South Carolina

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Duke seeks net metering program extension in South Carolina

Duke Energy Carolinas LLC on Sept. 5 filed a request with the Public Service Commission of South Carolina to extend its net energy metering program through March 15, 2019.

Under the net energy metering program, pursuant to legislation passed in 2014 known as Act 236, a kilowatt-hour produced by a customer is credited at the full retail rate of a kilowatt-hour produced by the utility.

Under Act 236, electric utilities in the state must make net energy metering available to customer-generators until the total nameplate capacity of the distributed energy systems equals 2% of the utility's five-year average of peak demand.

The Duke Energy Corp. utility reached the state-mandated cap, which translates to 40 MW, of customer-owned solar capacity in July. The company continued the program until Aug. 1 but has not offered it since that date.

The petitioners in the application to the commission said the extension will allow for time to develop recommendations and for legislative consideration of any recommendations, including those related to future net energy metering policies.

Legislation to raise the 2% net metering cap, opposed by utilities, failed to clear the South Carolina legislative session in 2018.

Duke Energy Carolinas said in a Sept. 5 petition that it will update its net metering program costs in its 2019 annual fuel cost proceeding. (Petition Docket No. 2015-55-E)