California Net Energy Metering Ratepayer Impacts Evaluation

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) contracted a study to provide an evaluation of the costs and benefits of the net energy metering (NEM) program in California. This study fulfills the requirements of Assembly Bill (AB) 2514 (Bradford, 2012) and Commission Decision (D.) 12-05-036, to study “who benefits, and who bears the economic burden, if any, of the net energy metering program.”

Study results show that, with renewable Distributed Generation (DG), NEM residential customers pay 81% of their full cost of service compared to 154% before DG, and non-residential NEM customers pay 112%, compared to 122% before DG. (Note that both groups of NEM ratepayers are larger than the average for their category.)  Overall, based on limited information for a single year, the NEM accounts appear to be paying slightly more than their full cost of service.

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