Net Metering

Inland Power & Light is implementing changes to its Net Metering program that will go into effect for applications received after May 15, 2018. Application before May 15, 2018 will fall under our current guidelines but will need to be installed by June 30, 2018. All applications received after May 15, 2018 will fall under our new Net Metering guidelines.

New renewable energy systems will be billed for all energy delivered at our retail rate. This rate is currently set at $.068 per kWh plus any applicable taxes. Energy generated in excess back to the grid will be compensated at the avoided cost rate. This rate is based on wholesale power costs. The 2018 rate is $.0285 and will be evaluated annually per our conservation potential assessment.

During any month where dollar amounts received from the customer generator are more than the consumption dollar amount we will bank the difference and continue to reset that bank to $0 on April 30 of each calendar year.

RCW 80.60 mandates that net metering to eligible customers be offered on a first-come-first-served basis until the cumulative generating capacity of net metering systems equals 0.5 percent of the 1996 Inland Power peak demand. Inland compensated these members on a kWh for kWh basis and met the requirements stipulated under RCW 80.60.

Why the change? The main reason is that the premium being paid (difference between retail and wholesale compensation) to net metering customers is solely being funded by rate payer funds. Crediting net metering customers at Inland’s retail price is much higher than what could be reasonably obtained in the wholesale power market. This deficit is then made up by non-generating members. We believe the new structure of compensation at the wholesale cost is fair and reasonable when taking into account all Inland Power members.

Is Net Metering For Me?

Inland Power supports our member’s interest in supplying their own electricity needs through the use of qualifying renewable energy sources. We have adopted a streamlined process so members can be assured that the system they are interested in meets Inland Power standards before they commit to buying and installing a solar, wind or other renewable energy generating system.

Net metering is a method to support member investment in renewable energy technologies. Net metering enables members to use their own generation to offset their consumption over a billing period. This is accomplished by allowing their electric meters to net with their consumption when they generate electricity.

Before interconnecting a system there are a few steps to have your system approved by Inland Power at your site. Answering the following questions is the first step in this process; nearly all residential scale systems will qualify for this streamlined approval process and you will have an answer in 15 business days or less.

1. Does your proposed system use an inverter-based interconnection which is certified by an independent laboratory to meet the requirements of UL 1741?

2. Is this system connected through a single-phase transformer?

3. Is the system 12 kW or smaller in size?

4. Does the installation of this system require changes or additions to Inland Power’s facilities? (Answering yes to this question requires additional review by Inland Power staff.)

If you answered yes to the first three questions and no to the fourth question you are ready to apply for interconnection to the Inland Power system. If you answered no to one of the first three questions or yes to question four, our engineering staff will need longer to evaluate your request.

The system categories are as follow:

  • Residential-scale system: Combined nameplate capacity at a single site of 12 kWdc or less.
  • Commercial-scale system: Combined nameplate capacity greater than 12 kWdc.
  • Shared commercial solar project: Owned or administered by an electric utility with a combined nameplate capacity greater than 1 MWdc and up to 5 MWdc.
  • Community solar project: No larger than 1,000 kWdc.

Incentive Rates

Incentive rates for the new program are based on the fiscal year that the system is certified, project type, and made-in-Washington bonus. Incentive rates are listed in the chart below. This is a production-based incentive. Inland Power will report annual production of your system to the WSU Energy Program team. They will then calculate your incentive for that fiscal year and share this with Inland Power, who will then provide you an incentive payment by Dec. 15 of that fiscal year.

A fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30. We are currently in fiscal year 2018 until June 30, 2018. Certification of a new system may take up to 30 days from date of submission.

Wsu Renewable Energy Rates

Submitting Your Application

You can submit your completed application to netmetering@inlandpower.com. For Washington residents there are additional programs which can make your system even more valuable. The Renewable Incentive Payment Program establishes a renewable energy production incentive with financial payments for certain renewable generating resources. Under Washington law (RCW 82.16), homeowners with renewable on-site power systems certified by the Washington State University Energy Extension can earn various per kilowatt-hour (kWh) incentive payments for metered generation. There is a $5,000 cap annually per household. See the documents to the right for details on this program and how to have your system approved for this valuable program.

These programs are currently available to residential customers who receive electrical service from Inland Power & Light. You must install and interconnect an eligible generating system (not exceeding 12 kW) located on your premises, which is interconnected to Inland’s electrical system. All required documentation (application, contract, building permits, WSU certification, etc.) must be completed and have written approval received from Inland Power & Light prior to interconnecting your generating system to Inland’s electrical grid.

Renewable Energy Loans

Inland Power & Light has partnered with National Cooperative Bank (NCB) to help expand member access to our renewable energy systems. Through the effort, residential members are able to finance their purchase of renewable energy products with a loan from NCB. These loans provide a flexible option for members to spread their investment cost over multiple years instead of having to make an up-front cash payment in order to participate and enjoy the benefits of this system.

The application, qualifications and requirements of these loans are all managed through National Cooperative Bank. Questions about the loans can be directed to Brittney Baldwin at (866) 499-3517. If you have any questions related to Inland Power products or services, please contact our member services department at (509) 789-4277.

Contact us for more information: