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Interconnection Standards

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Fuel Cells
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Minnesota Public Utilities Commission

Minnesota's net-metering law, enacted in 1983, applies to all investor-owned utilities, municipal utilities and rural electric cooperatives. Qualifying facilities of less than 1,000 kilowatts (kW) are eligible for net metering. However, uniform interconnection regulations were not implemented when net metering was established.

In response to state legislation enacted in 2001, in September 2004 the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) adopted an order establishing generic standards for utility tariffs for interconnection and the operation of distributed-generation facilities up to 10 megawatts (MW) in capacity. The PUC standards contain technical requirements related to engineering studies, mandatory minimum insurance requirements for different sized systems, equipment certification definitions, a dispute resolution process, and standard application fees. The PUC has approved compliance tariffs filed by the state's investor-owned utilities. Municipal utilities and electric cooperatives were required to adopt a tariff that addresses the issues included in the PUC's order.

All utilities must report annually on the number of interconnected systems. The PUC has developed streamlined uniform interconnection applications and a process that addresses safety, economics and reliability issues.

In 2011, the Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources started a review process of all distributed generation procedures, conducting stakeholder meetings and workshops and accepting comments. Details can be found on the program web site listed above.