Solar power grid link will carry a cost

Home and business owners who plan to produce solar electricity and sell it back to the utility are going to face a lot of a paperwork and costs.

The nation’s regulatory agency said Wednesday that those who do so will have to pay for the connections themselves because the costs should not be born by electrical users who are not selling energy back to the utilities.

Left unsaid is exactly how much these connections will cost. The homes presumably already are hooked to the electrical net but with power flowing in just one direction. The agency, the Autoridad Reguladora de Servicios Públicos, said that this cost of hooking up has yet to be announced.

That will be done by the Intendencia de Energía.

Power companies have been foot dragging for months over the sale of power by private generators. The companies are involved in writing the rules, so those with solar electrical generators might be surprised by the complexity.

The idea is that those with the solar panels will be able to sell their excess power to the utilities when they are generating a surplus. At other times the home or commercial building will draw what extra power it needs from the utility. The price the utility pays for the excess will offset somewhat the cost of the electric bill.

However, the Autoridad already has said that payments for private power generation might be only once a year.

Utilities are required to purchase the excess power because of a law.

Those installing solar panels have said that wrestling with the bureaucracy on behalf of customers will be part of the job.

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