Excerpt from “Our Turn: The truth about net metering,” by Kate Epsen and Dick Norman, published by the Concord Monitor.
It is time to set the record straight on net energy metering.
The New Hampshire CleanTech Council and the Granite State Hydropower Association, which represents hundreds of businesses and thousands of employees across New Hampshire, want to explain what net metering is and why it is creating jobs and putting dollars in the pockets of Granite State families and businesses.
What is net metering? Net metering is either a billing arrangement or a reimbursement arrangement for electricity generated by solar, wind, hydropower or cogeneration that is used to meet the needs of a residence, a municipality, a group of people or a business.
How much does a net metered solar system cost and what does it produce? A typical home solar system costs about $20,000. Even if you don’t have cash up front, you can take out a loan or sign a lease, usually at no up-front cost if you choose. Incentives and tax credits are available.
If you put a solar system on your home’s roof, it will generate power for about 8 or 9 hours each day in the summer and for about five hours each day in the winter. Net metering allows you to build a bank of energy credit on your monthly electric bill that you spend in some months and save during others. There is no payment made or exchanged for small systems. Net metering allows your neighbor to reap the benefits of the excess clean renewable power your home solar panels generated while you save money on your electric bill. Everyone wins.