Eversource net metering is a renewable rate program available to customers using their own renewable energy source to generate electricity. The program measures the difference between electricity delivered by Eversource to a customer and the amount of renewable energy that the customer generates and feeds back into the grid. Renewable energy sources that qualify for net metering include solar panels, wind turbines, cogeneration units, and micro turbines.
Eversource serves the states of Massachusetts (divided into the regions of Eastern and Western Massachusetts), Connecticut, and New Hampshire. The net metering program is available throughout Eversource’s territory; however, the requirements and rates vary by state.
There is no charge for customers to have a net meter installed. There are interconnection fees that vary by solar panel system size and state (see chart at end of document).
For customers in CT, Eversource banks excess solar energy you send to the grid, and applies any extra kilowatt-hour (kWh) credits for you to use in the following month(s). However, accumulated kilowatt-hour credits are cashed out annually each March – at this point, Eversource will zero out your banked kWh balance, and provide a monetary credit on your bill. The pricing you'll receive for this credit will be based on the "Rider N" rate, which is lower than retail electricity rates.
The vast majority of residential Eversource customers with solar panels in Connecticut will have a system that is under 20 kilowatts (kW) in size, which means they qualify for net metering as a Class I Renewable energy resource (sized at less than or equal to 2,000 kW).
For Eversource customers in Massachusetts, solar panel system size determines which of the three classes a net metering customer falls under:
Class I customers receive 100% of the value of their excess kilowatt-hours, including Eversource charges for basic service, distribution, transmission, and transition.
For Class II and III systems, these rates and prices are determined based on a Market Net Metering Credit. The utility rate for net metering is calculated by multiplying 60% by the excess kilowatt-hours (including Eversource charges for basic service, distribution, transmission, and transition).
Net metering is available to any Eversource customer in New Hampshire who owns or operates a facility powered by renewable energy, up to 1,000 kW in size.
The value of net metering credits are calculated by subtracting the kWh supplied by Eversource from the kWh fed back into the grid during the billing period. You receive a monetary bill credit for each kWh that’s 100% of the default energy service charge and transmission charges, and plus 25% of distribution charges. This surplus is entered into a ‘bank’ which can be used to reduce your overall bill charges. If the surplus energy after one year is under 600 kWh, it can be carried forward to the next year.
|State||Customer type||System size||Electricity rate schedule|
|Connecticut||Class I||Less than/equal to 2000kW||100% of retail rate|
|Massachusetts||Class I||60 kW or less||100% of retail rate|
|Massachusetts||Class II||Greater than 60 kW up to 1,000 kW||60% of retail rate|
|Massachusetts||Class III||Greater than 1,000 kW up to 2,000 kW||60% of retail rate|
|New Hampshire||Any||Peak capacity of 1000kW||100% of default energy charges and transmission, 25% of distribution|
The Eversource net metering cap is the maximum amount of customer-sited renewable energy that is eligible for participation in the net metering program. It can be calculated as a percentage of total electricity production, or as a fixed number. The cap for Eversource net metering varies by state.
Connecticut has no stated limit on the aggregate capacity or net metered systems in a utility’s service territory.
In Massachusetts, solar PV systems under 10 kW (e.g., most residential systems) are exempt from the net metering cap.
Otherwise, Eversource net metering in Eastern Massachusetts is available up to 4% of Eversource’s highest historical peak electricity load for private facilities and up to 5% of highest historical electricity peak load for public facilities. In Western Massachusetts, the cap for private facilities is 7% of highest historical peak load and 8% for public facilities.
New Hampshire law recently eliminated net metering caps in the state. As a result, there is no limit to the number of systems that can subscribe to net metering.
|State||Cap (%)||Cap (MW)|
|Eastern Massachusetts||Private: 4%
< 10 kW: None
|Private: 199.12 MW
Public: 248.90 MW
< 10 kW: None
|Western Massachusetts||Private: 7%
< 10 kW: none
|Private: 59.78 MW
Public: 68.32 MW
< 10 kW: None
Eversource offers net metering to customers in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire at a competitive rate.
In Connecticut, Eversource’s net metering policy is very similar to the state’s other large energy supplier, United Illuminating. The costs for small project interconnection are both the same at $200, and both determine their solar export reimbursement price the same way.
In Massachusetts, other energy companies that offer solar panel net metering include National Grid and Unitil. These companies, like Eversource, comply with Massachusetts law in regards to net metering and the Market Net Metering Credit system that gives customers different rates depending on their solar panel system size. The only difference is in the value of a net metering credit, which is dependent on your location and energy needs.
Other energy utilities offering net metering in New Hampshire include NHEC and Unitil. Like Eversource, both Unitil and NHEC offer customers a credit bank that may be carried over annually if below 600 kWh. The only difference is in the value of a net metering credit, which is dependent on your location and energy needs.
Eversource credits net excess generation (NEG) by a full kilowatt-hour each month. Any remaining credits are carried forward to the next month. However, Eversource cashes out excess kWh credits at the end of a 12-month period (every March), and provides a bill credit for this excess electricity based on the current net metering rider tariff, which is lower than retail electricity rates.
For systems in all three classes of net metering in Massachusetts, monthly NEG never expires and is rolled over to subsequent billing periods. However, the value of the credit is dependent on whether the system is a Class I, II, or III facility.
For Class II and III facilities, NEG credits in Massachusetts are credited at 60% of the retail rate of electricity. Class I facilities are “cap exempt,” so they receive a standard net metering credit worth 100% of the retail rate of electricity.
Eversource customers in New Hampshire receive a credit for monthly NEG valued at retail rates for transmission and default energy service charge, plus 25% of the distribution charge. Any surplus kWh can be used in subsequent months and Eversource will indicate the amount accumulated in a customer’s ‘bank’ for future use. These banked hours can be used to reduce kWh bill charges for future months. If banked quantities are less than 600 kWh, credits can be carried forward annually.
Eversource does not offer other solar incentives directly to customers. However, there is a federal tax credit for solar, as well as some state incentives:
Interconnection is the process of physically connecting your solar panels (or other renewable energy source) to Eversource’s electric power system. Each state within Eversource’s territory requires an application to connect. Application fees and requirements vary by state.
|State||Project Criteria||App. fee|
|Connecticut||Systems 10 kW or under||$100|
|Connecticut||Systems 2 MW or under||$500|
|Connecticut||Systems over 2 MW in size||$1,000|
|Massachusetts||Systems under 15 kW (single phase inverter)
or under 25 kW (three phase inverter)
|Massachusetts||All other systems||$4.50/kW|
|New Hampshire||Projects under 100 kVa||No fee|
|New Hampshire||Projects over 100 kVa||$500|
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