Under the terms of the new regulations, ‘Residential Generators’ in Chile are now able to connect renewable energy systems, such as solar, to the distribution system and receive payments for the surplus electricity they generate.
The new net metering laws will open up the domestic market for renewables as well as cogeneration plants and grants all small scale users under 100 kW the right to grid connection. Additionally, under the new arrangements, smaller installations are not subject to the standard environmental protection procedures.
Among the companies anticipating new business under the legislation, Rame Energy says it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Santiago School ‘Colegio Suizo de Santiago’ (CSS) to install their first ‘residential’ rooftop photovoltaic system. Rame will install, own and operate a 25 kW solar power plant for CSS, scheduled for commissioning in early 2015, and scope exists to extend the solar plant to a capacity of 300 kW.
The electricity produced will be sold to CSS under a 15 year power purchase agreement with any excess to be ‘sold’ back to the grid by the school.
Commenting on the legislation, Lilian Nunez, CEO of Rame’s South American Operations, said: ‘It provides a practical and workable framework that will ensure the domestic solar market will see huge growth.’