Thursday's Maui News contained good news for citizens considering the installation of a photovoltaic system on their house:
Maui Electric Co. is going to revise requirements that will reduce the number of interconnection studies to its grid for most single-phase systems up to 10 kilowatts.
The change comes about as the parent company, Hawaiian Electric Co., revises the checkpoint for such studies from allowing 50 percent daily minimum load of electricity on a circuit to be generated by PV to a new maximum of 75 percent.
The company estimates the new threshold will allow 50 to 70 percent more PV room on a circuit.
The cost of the studies, sometimes thousands of dollars, was seen as a deterrent to many residential users switching to PV. Under the new rules, anyone who paid for a study to install a 10-kilowatt or smaller systems will receive a refund.
The story said that a customer or his contractor still must supply a signed Net Energy Metering application with the utility with supporting paperwork before installing the system.
The threshold remains at 50 percent for larger installations.
The announced changes should go a long way toward PV development on Maui and help wean us off our dependency on fossil fuels for electricity generation.
Anyone seeking more information can visit HECO's Solar Resource Center at goingsolar.heco.com.
* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.