The Lakeland Electric Net Metering Program is for customers who choose to add solar renewable generation to their homes or businesses. Customers with personal renewable generation offset the electricity they will have to purchase from Lakeland Electric.
What is Net Metering?
Lakeland Electric net metering is the condition where the energy being received from a customer-owned generator is metered separately from the energy being delivered to the customer and is credited back to the customer at the full retail rate.
How does the Net Metering Program work?
Customers are charged for the metered kWh received from Lakeland Electric during each month. Customers are credited for the metered kWh sent to Lakeland Electric each month.
Lakeland Electric offers net metering to residential customers who install photovoltaic (PV) systems up to 10 kilowatts (kW) and to commercial customers who install PV systems up to 500 kW.
What is Interconnection of a PV system?
PV interconnection occurs when a solar powered generating system is installed on the customer side of the utility meter and operates alongside the utility’s electrical service to the property. The energy produced by this generator is primarily intended to offset part or all of a customer's annual electricity requirements.
Lakeland Electric customers who wish to participate in the Lakeland Electric Net Metering Program must be informed of the following:
- A list of standards has been approved by nationally recognized professional organizations that address the design, installation, and operation of solar PV systems. It is the customer's responsibility to ensure compliance with such standards.
- These standards and utility terms for interconnection and net metering are specified in two separate documents titled:
"Agreement for parallel connection of a Photovoltaic Generator and/or an Energy
Storage System (PV-ESS) up to 2MW with the City of Lakeland’s Electric Distribution System" All Customers
Any customer, whether residential or commercial, who wishes to participate in the program is required to review, sign and abide by the requirements of one of these agreements.
The Solar Price Plan is the price plan for residential customers who choose to produce some of their own energy using rooftop solar. The plan encourages customers to shift their energy usage away from peak times. Customers who are able to avoid large demands during peak times can save significant money with a much lower energy rate during the rest of the day.
How Does It Work?
The Solar Price Plan is a combination of two parts:
1.) A demand charge applied during a peak period
2.) A lower energy rate than the standard plan
A demand charge is applied based on your single highest energy usage during peak times over a billing period. The demand charge is $5.27 per kilowatt. For example, if your highest usage during a peak period for a month is 5 kilowatts, your demand charge would be $26.35.
All your energy for the month is billed at $0.02427 per kilowatt hour (kWh) regardless of when it is used. This rate is less than half what you would pay on the standard plan.
Demand is the amount of power needed to supply every electrical device running in your home at a specific point in time.
Think about it like your Internet service. When one person streams a movie or television show on a device in your home, the stream works perfectly. But as additional people in your home attempt to stream video at the same time, more bandwidth is needed.
Electricity demand is similar. As more appliances in your home run simultaneously, your demand for power increases. For example, ten 100-watt light bulbs demand 1,000-watts (1 kilowatt) of electricity (10x100) to stay lit.
Certain appliances – such as HVAC units, electric ovens and clothes dryers – demand significant power from the grid. That's why not running them at the same time is important to minimize the Demand Charge.
The graphic below illustrates this concept, and why managing demand has a positive effect on the power grid.
In the wintertime (Nov. through March) the On-Peak hours are 6:01 am – 10:00 am weekdays.
In the summertime (April through Oct.) the On-Peak hours are 1:01 pm – 8:00pm weekdays.
Major holidays and weekends are excluded from the peak times.
Why is a Solar Price Plan necessary?
Peaks in usage are a major challenge for all utility companies. Lakeland Electric must maintain the ability to generate and deliver enough electricity to meet these peak periods, but that infrastructure goes largely unused during the rest of the day.
Solar customers do not pay for energy or at least as much energy when the sun is shining brightly. Many even receive credits when they produce more than they use. However, they still need the grid and the power plants for when the sun isn’t shining.
By encouraging customers to shift their highest demands for energy to non-peak times, overall costs go down and everyone benefits.
Solar Net Metering
Did you know Lakeland Electric has a total of 5 Solar Farms right here in Lakeland?
This means, when the sun is shining on a summer day, LE has the capability to generate over 15 megawatts of power.
Since 1994 Lakeland Electric has been interested in utilizing alternative energy sources. Solar Panels are ideal for Florida’s sunny days and can minimize customer’s dependency on the main electric grid. Moving towards the future, Lakeland Electric hopes to increase Solar Programs with additional solar farms and customer’s personal solar panels.
This solar farm is located by the Lakeland Linder Airport in south Lakeland.