Net metering: A key to energy saving


Krishnan Rajagopalan shares insights to Net Metering in an industry story with Electrical and Power Review

An industry analysis on net-metering and its challenges

Solar is an important source of renewable energy. Given India’s major dependence on imported fossil fuel for its energy needs, increasing renewable share especially solar in the energy mix would be a significant contributor to India’s goal of environment sustainability and providing energy security.

Net metering is essential for a location where the time need of power load is in off sun hours is different than the generation time of the day. Also places where 24/7 power requirements is not there and holidays are there, net metering is very essential, believes Krishnan Rajagopalan, Head –Solar Business, Anchor Electricals Pvt. Ltd. Like for example residential complexes, schools, offices etc. It is very essential to run the solar plant fully without stopping like load shedding or clamping the plant generation. “The power is free from sun; we have to tap it fully. This will help in efficiently operating the plant and also move toward energy security,” he adds.

Poor net metering policies are discouraging the solar sector believes, Rajagopalan. He says, “Poor net metering policies are discouraging solar, particularly in smaller project capacities. But this needs to be changed. Banking and net metering is very essential for this sector to grow. We are sure the central government is working many initiatives through state government to address this and different states have come out with their net metering policy. But a uniform net metering policy initiative will drive this market more rapidly.”

Is net metering a curse or a blessing for solar sector?

As per Rajagopalan net metering is a boon to the solar sector. It is a very essential component of the evacuation of solar power which is generated. As solar generation is not in our control, we should utilise the energy fully and not under-utilise the plant, just because there is no load at the building. We should have net metering policy and allow the power to flow to the grid and adjust the same in the monthly utility bill using an import – export net metering arrangement. This system should be automated with software so that human intervention and manual errors are avoided and the process is smoothened.