How it works
Net Metering helps you offset the cost of the electricity you buy from PGE with energy you generate at your business. Power can be generated with solar, wind, hydro and other eligible renewable resources.
With Net Metering, PGE will keep track of the energy you use and the amount of excess power your system generates. The excess kilowatt-hour credits are deducted from your usage and you receive a bill for the difference (or net).
Customers who have multiple billing meters at the same location may also qualify for meter aggregation. Aggregation allows for any remaining excess kilowatt-hour credits on the net meter at the end of the month to be applied to additional qualifying billing meters. (See Net Metering Billing for details.)
Customers interested in back up batteries can also design a system for Net Metering that incorporates battery storage as a backup power source.
Net Metering requires the installation of a special bidirectional meter, which monitors the power flow in two directions. Installation of this meter is free.
Steps for setting up Net Metering
- First, check your address on our online map of generation-limited service lines. Most of our distribution lines have capacity for new Net Metering projects and can be accommodated with a standard Level 1 or Level 2 application, but a more in-depth application and design review process will be required to address important safety and reliability concerns if your project is planned on a limited line. Contact us to discuss this process before you apply.
- Before beginning construction, complete an application for Net Metering in PowerClerk. See below to determine which application to use. The review period typically takes 15 to 30 business days.
- Receive the results of PGE’s review via email. There are three possible results:
- Asked to submit an application at a higher level which require additional studies
- Approved contingent upon modifications. If any upgrades to PGE’s equipment are required for your system to safely interconnect, we will inform you of the estimated cost of the upgrade. You will be responsible for the cost of these upgrades. For this reason, we recommend that you wait to begin construction solar system until your application has been reviewed and approved.
Once your review is complete, we will send you a Net Metering agreement, for your electronic signature.
Which Net Metering application to use
PGE uses your Net Metering application to assess the potential effect of your project on the safety, reliability and quality of power delivered to neighboring customers, and to determine whether any upgrades or modifications to our system will be necessary. Most projects don’t require extensive system upgrades. Where upgrades are needed, state rules require us to charge the cost to the customer who’ll benefit from them. We’ll work with you to identify any upgrade costs so you can decide if you want to proceed.
You need to submit your application and wait for approval before constructing your project, especially if you are applying for a project on a generation-limited line. Early consultation and waiting for approval will prevent delays and help you avoid potentially costly mistakes.
Time is important, so we’ll review your application as quickly as possible. Depending on how complete your application is and how complex your project is, this may take as little as five business days or as long as 30.
View the descriptions below to determine which application fits your project. For details on the three types of applications, see the Net Metering rules from the Oregon Public Utility Commission.
- Level 1 application is for inverter-based systems with a nameplate capacity of 25 kW or less. There is no application fee.
- Level 2 application is for inverter-based systems with a nameplate capacity of 25 kW to 2 MW. The application fee is $50 plus $1 per kW of capacity.
- Level 3 application is for systems where the Level 1 or Level 2 application review found that more extensive studies, upgrades or protection equipment will be necessary. This application is also for non-inverter-based systems or systems not using lab-tested equipment. The application fee is $100 plus $2 per kW of capacity.