2017 Coverage of Alliant Energy Net Metering Policy
The Iowa Utilities Board has accepted a policy change from Alliant Energy which alters regulations on net metering (*see below for a definition). Alliant’s current net metering policy is optimal for solar; in most cases, we’re able to offset your electrical bill by 100%. Unfortunately, Alliant’s new policy will lead to customers having to size their solar system significantly below their annual energy use or to incur significantly higher costs/longer payback periods.
The policy change is currently scheduled to go into effect April 1st, 2017 May 1st, however if you file an interconnection application before April 1st, 2017 May 1st, then you’ll be grandfathered into the current net metering policy. Then you’ll have up to 12 months to complete the installation of the solar array.
Several organizations have petitioned the Iowa Utilities Board to reconsider their decision, and the Iowa Utilities Board has 30 days to respond. We'll keep you updated on the issue as new information comes to light.
UPDATED 5/4/2017, 2:41 PM:
The Iowa Utilities Board has officially ruled and the new net metering tariff is effective as of May 4th at 12:00 AM. Alliant Energy has updated their website with this date. You may read the board's ruling approving the tariff here.
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UPDATED 5/2/2017, 10:28 AM:
Simpleray submitted an inquiry with the IUB regarding whether or not they believed the IUB would rule that the policy would be retroactive upon their approval. The IUB responded essentially saying that they cannot predict how the Board will rule. Below is their response:
Regarding your question about Alliant-IPL's revised net metering tariff and if the IUB's decision will be retroactive to May 1 at 12 AM, I can't predict how the Board will rule once they issue their order on the revised tariff.
UPDATED 5/1/2017, 11:40 AM:
We also submitted an inquiry to the IUB. The IUB responded, and confirmed that they have not yet issued a ruling on the new tariff:
Thank you for your phone call and follow up email this morning, and question about Alliant Energy/Interstate Power and Light Company's (Alliant-IPL) revised net metering pilot tariff filed with the Iowa Utilities Board on March 31, 2017, in Docket No. TF-2016-0321. In that March 31 filing, Alliant-IPL proposed a May 1, 2017, effective date however, at this time, the IUB has not issued its decision on that tariff.
You can review all the documents regarding this pilot tariff on the IUB's electronic filing system at this link:
https://efs.iowa.gov/efs/ShowDocketSummary.do?docketNumber=TF-2016-0321. Once on this landing page click on the "Documents" tab and then "View" to the left of the individual filing you wish to review.
UPDATED 5/1/2017, 9:02 AM:
The Iowa Utilities Board (IUB) has not yet approved the Alliant Energy Pilot Net Metering tariff. However, since it is listed on Alliant Energy’s website we contacted them to get an understanding of their view of the situation.
Alliant Energy responded confirming that the net metering changes have not yet been approved by the IUB. However, they believe that if, and when, the IUB approves there is a chance that the changes will be retroactive as of 5/1/2017 at 12:00 AM.
UPDATED 4/28/2017, 4:51 PM:
Alliant Energy has posted this notice within their PowerClerk* software:
For the Net Metering Pilot deadline, the application received date will be based on the "Iowa - Application Submitted - Pending Payment" timestamp.
Complete applications submitted before 12:00 a.m. on Monday, 5/1/2017 will be grandfathered into the AEP Net Metering tariff.
Funds do not need to be received by 5/1/17. They will, however, need to be received within 5 business of submitting the application.
Please contact the Renewables Hotline at 800-972-5325 if you have any questions.
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*PowerClerk is the platform that is used to submit interconnection applications online.
The Iowa Utilities Board docket updated in the afternoon of March 31st, to state,
Any customer who submits a completed interconnection application prior to May 1, 2017 will be allowed to take service under the existing AEP Rate.
We also received an email from Alliant about the March 31st docket updates. A representative from the Renewable Energy Hotline states that:
The deadline has been extended due to Alliant Energy filed a revision to the net metering pilot today to include the information the Iowa Utilities Board (IUB) requested in their March 17 Order. The effective date of the net metering pilot tariff is May 1, 2017 however is subject to change pending Board approval. [sic]
After reviewing the documents, our interpretation leads us to believe that the May 1st deadline is likely, but it is uncertain until the IUB officially approves it. As always, we remain committed to serving our customers and making sure you have the latest and most accurate information to make a decision. We'll continue to keep you updated as more information is released.
We are attempting to be as transparent as possible and will continue to communicate updates with you as we receive them.
*NET METERING is when a solar array produces more energy than is being immediately consumed and you are able to credit that excess energy back to the utility company. They apply that credit to electricity you use at night or on cloudy days. This can net you a $0 bill, aside from a monthly service fee.