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The capacity of renewable systems installed under group net metering or virtual net metering should not be less than 1 kW and more than 500 kW, according to the ‘Group Net Metering and Virtual Net Metering for Renewable Energy Guidelines, 2022.
The virtual net metering guidelines issued by the Chhattisgarh State Electricity Regulatory Commission (CSERC) will apply to all residential consumers, group housing societies, and establishments of government and local authorities.
The capacity to be installed should not exceed the sanctioned load or contract demand.
The consumer will be allowed to generate energy for self-consumption and feed the excess energy into the grid, which will be adjusted under net metering.
The cumulative capacity of distributed renewable systems allowed to be interconnected within the distribution network should not exceed 100% of the respective transformer capacity.
Billing and energy accounting
If the export of units during any billing period exceeds the import at the connection where the renewable energy system is located, the surplus units injected into the grid will be adjusted against the energy consumed in the monthly bill of the service connection. The priority sequence for adjustment will begin with the service connection where the renewable energy system is located.
According to the new guidelines, the electricity consumption in any time block will be first compensated with the electricity generation in similar time blocks in the same billing cycle of the consumer. Any surplus units injected will be adjusted against the energy consumed in the monthly bill in a sequence indicated in the priority list provided by the consumer.
If during any billing period, the export of units either in non-time-of-day (ToD) or ToD tariff exceeds the import of units by the electricity service connection, such surplus units injected by the consumer will be carried forward to the next billing period as energy credit.
The energy generated from the renewable energy system will be credited to each participating consumer’s monthly electricity bill as per the procurement ratio from the renewable energy system indicated under the agreement entered by the consumer.
The consumer should have the option to change the share of the credit of electricity from the renewable energy system subject to the ratio of procurement indicated in the agreement once in the financial year with a notice of two months.
The electricity consumption in any time block will be first compensated with the electricity generation in similar time blocks in the same billing cycle of the participating consumer. Any surplus generation in any time block in a billing cycle will be accounted for as the surplus generation during the off-peak time block.
If the units credited during any billing period of any participating consumer exceed the import, such surplus credited units will be carried forward in the next billing period as energy credits for adjustment in subsequent billing periods within the settlement period of each participating consumer.
The quantum of distributed renewable energy generation as recorded by the generation meter will be accounted for by the distribution licensee toward compliance with its renewable purchase obligation (RPO) as stipulated in the ‘Distributed Renewable Energy Regulations, 2019.’ If the renewable energy system is set up by an obligated entity, the entire energy generated by these renewable energy systems will be accounted for RPO compliance by the obligated entity.
The renewable energy systems set up under group net metering and virtual net metering arrangement will be exempted from wheeling, cross-subsidy, transmission and distribution, and banking charges.
Recently, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy invited feedback from stakeholders on its draft standard operating procedures for virtual net metering and group net metering to overcome the challenges of providing rural households with rooftop solar power.
Last August, CSERC had proposed amendments to the ‘Grid-Interactive Distributed Renewable Energy Sources Regulations, 2019.’ The Commission had proposed an upper cap of 500 KW for net metering arrangement.
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Rakesh Ranjan is a staff reporter at Mercom India. Prior to joining Mercom, he worked in many roles as a business correspondent, assistant editor, senior content writer, and sub-editor with bcfocus.com, CIOReview/Silicon India, Verbinden Communication, and Bangalore Bias. Rakesh holds a Bachelor’s degree in English from Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU). More articles from Rakesh Ranjan.