Ontario’s net metering program was initially introduced in 2005 as a means of allowing customers to utilize renewable sources of energy such as wind and solar to power their residential or commercial properties. Like many government-mandated initiatives, this program has endured a few changes since its inception that may pique the interest of consumers who are considering applying for the net metering program. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about solar net metering in Ontario, the changes that are being implemented, and how they affect your eligibility to partake in the program.
What Is Solar Net Metering In Ontario?
The solar net metering program was instated by the Liberal party of Ontario and its main focus is to help improve the lives of energy consumers by offering them an incentive to transform their properties into prominent energy producing facilities. Eligible consumers must apply for the solar net metering program in Ontario. Once their application is approved, they can then install backup batteries, generators, and meters that measure the amount of energy they produce and consume in their homes or separate carports if applicable.
Depending on the type of solar energy program each consumer signs up for—hybrid, on-grid, or off-grid—not to mention the amount of energy produced and consumed by any given property, the return on investment will vary. Basically, each meter measures the amount of renewable energy your property produces and then subtracts the amount used. The remaining quantity is considered a surplus that’s sent back to the main electrical grid in your area. That surplus energy could end up saving you a great deal of money on your monthly electricity bill and it helps to power the rest of your neighbourhood.
Ontario’s Net Metering Program: What’s New?
On September 25, 2018, a few important proposed amendments went into effect for Ontario’s solar net metering program that will inevitably impact renewable energy consumers and producers.
Parameters of the Previous Net Metering Program in Ontario
Private renewable energy producers now have the option of entering into what’s known as power agreements with third-party companies who will distribute the surplus energy on behalf of the consumers. As per the stipulations of these contractual agreements, neither the third-party company nor the consumers will be legally permitted to work with outside contractors. Under these new net metering parameters, the sources of renewable energy, the power itself, and any income generated from it will all remain between the consumer and the third-party distributor.
Energy Consumer Protection Changes Being Implemented
Naturally, the next viable step is to implement some significant changes to protect consumers from entering into potentially fraudulent agreements with these third-party distributors. Consumers will have access to a plethora of educational resources so that they understand the inner workings of the net metering program and how energy is measured, facilitate transparency in these business transactions, and help consumers make informed choices when deciding on which companies they should enter into an agreement with.
At Bendygo Solar we firmly stand by the integrity and positive environmental impact that the solar panel net metering program is having in Ontario. Along with the local government, our top priority is to educate our clients and raise awareness about the constructive nature of this program and how it helps Ontarians save money on their energy bills while simultaneously decreasing the size of their carbon footprints. Contact us today to learn more about the net metering initiative in Ontario and schedule a free consultation.