New Regulations to hasten interconnection to Prepa grid
SAN JUAN – The Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s new regulations for its distribution system interconnections is slated to go into effect March 8.
On Feb. 6 the utility submitted to the Department of State its Regulations to Interconnect Generators to the Distribution System of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority and to Participate in the New Metering Programs.
The new rules hasten the process by which solar panel systems or other renewable energy generators are connected to the power grid. Prepa’s program allows for surplus power to be transferred onto the grid and allows customers to offset their energy costs.
The regulatory framework establish an expedited plugging-in process for systems with a generation capacity of 10 kilowatts (kW) or less installed in residences or businesses. The regulations state that Prepa must approve or deny the interconnections within 10 business days.
In the case of systems with a generation capacity greater than 10 kW and up to 1 megawatt (MW), Prepa will be required to issue an evaluation letter within 10 business days and endorse drawings within five business days of the filing of certified drawings prepared according to the evaluation letter.
Prepa will be required to inspect systems with a capacity of 500 kW, which will be required to undergo a coordination study with relay protection adjustments.
The regulations creates an Aggregate Net Metering Program exclusively for government entities and nonprofit university institutions and a Shared Metering Program exclusively for residential and commercial clients.
The new rules also exempt customers approved for interconnections of inverter-based systems with a capacity of less than 300 kW from obtaining a general liability policy.
Prepa customers who already have interconnection and net-metering agreements will be able to renew these using the new regulations.
Besides the net-metering regulations, Prepa says its Transmission System Interconnection Regulation also comes into effect Wednesday, but will require additional technical information because of the complexity of the systems.
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