Report: DG Interconnections Improve Dramatically in California

Date: 1 Mar 2005 | posted in: Energy, Energy Self Reliant States | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

California’s Public Interest Energy (PIER) Program has received a final report that provides an analysis of the impacts, costs and timelines for distributed generation interconnection in California.

The new report, “Improving Interconnections in California”, covers four areas.

  • Evaluating whether California’s Revised Rule 21 has improved the process of interconnection of DG to the electrical system.
  • Assessing the potential for simplifying Rule 21 further to expand the types of different applications eligible for a “simplified interconnection” and thus improve the cost-effectiveness of interconnection.
  • Reducing the cost of interconnection below what was experienced prior to the revised Rule 21 by 30% for units less than one megawatt and by 15% for units equal to or greater than 1MW
  • Reducing the costs associated with delays in approval and installation of interconnection by more than 20% for projects less than 1MW.

    As to the project goals listed above, the authors found the following:

    The process of interconnection in California has been improved by 83% over a baseline level. The time reduction objective of 20 percent is exceeded every year under the Revised Rule 21 by a large margin since 2000.

    Nine DG technology packages – microturbines, fuel cells and induction generators – have been certified to use simplified interconnection procedures.

    The weighted average of the cost savings of the DG projects analyzed shows an end-user cost savings of 74% to reach a point of interconnection. This exceeds the target of 30%. The costs associated with delays in interconnection approval and installation have been reduced by more than 20% for projects of all sizes.


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    John Farrell directs the Energy Democracy initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance and he develops tools that allow communities to take charge of their energy future, and pursue the maximum economic benefits of the transition to 100% renewable power.