Please be advised that we have reached the net metering capacity as defined in the Missouri state statute. Members interested in installing a renewable energy system can still do so by becoming a qualified facility through Associated Electric Cooperative, Inc. For more information, please contact our office.
What is Net Metering?
Please remember, our net metering program is currently full and is reevaluated at the end of each calendar year. Net metering is a process that enables members with a wind or solar system on their home or business to export power that is in excess of their immediate on-site needs. This offsets an equal amount of power supplied by the cooperative at a different time within the same monthly billing period. In this situation the member is billed at the regular cooperative retail rate for the “net” amount of power used that is in excess of power the member generates on site. If members generate more power than their home uses during the monthly billing period, the excess is metered and put out onto the electric grid. The cooperative subtracts the amount of power purchased from the grid from the amount generated out to the grid and provides the member with a “credit” for the “net excess” power. This credit is available for use the next billing cycle, and the member has 12 months to use any banked credit before it is forfeited. For most Missouri cooperatives, the credit is calculated by multiplying the number of “net excess” kilowatt-hours times Associated Electric Cooperative’s cost to purchase the fuel needed to generate a kilowatt-hour (called avoided cost). Example: Member solar panels generate to the grid: 1,000 kWhs Member receives from the grid: - 950 kWhs Member receives avoided cost credit for: 50 kWhs
Net Metering Laws
Under current net metering laws, the co-op is not able to recover distribution expenses and demand costs through kilowatt-hour sales when a member installs a solar array or wind turbine. Members must still pay an availability fee each month, based on the size of transformer at the location of the meter. Banked credits cannot be applied towards the availability charge as defined in the MO state statute.
Only you can make the decision, but our focus is to ensure you have all the information and data to make the best choice for yourself. If you are interested in applying for interconnection with Tri-County Electric Cooperative’s electrical system, you should first contact the Cooperative with your membership account information and make sure you have fully reviewed and understand the billing process and all of the requirements.
Current law states that the manufacturer of any electric generation unit may be held liable for any damage to property or person caused by a defect in the generation unit. If the size of the unit is larger than 10 KW, liability insurance is required. If under 10 KW, Tri-County Electric Cooperative still strongly suggests that a member-generator considers liability insurance. If there was a malfunction, the member-generator would likely be named in a lawsuit as a channel to get to the manufacturer. The law clearly states that the retail electric supplier shall have no liability absent of clear and convincing evidence of their fault.
As a protection for the Missouri member-generator, any seller, installer, and/or manufacturer who misrepresents any electric generation unit’s safety or performance standards may be investigated by the state Attorney General upon report.
All of the electricity generated by the distributed generation unit will first be used at the member-generator’s site. Any excess electrical power will go back on the grid and be recorded with the use of a special metering system at the member-generator’s location. The cost to upgrade the metering and any additional screening studies to assess the impact on Tri-County's electrical distribution system will be paid by the member-generator. An estimated cost of the special electric metering system is available upon request.