Net metering is an electricity billing mechanism that allows consumers who generate some or all of their own electricity to use that electricity anytime, instead of when it is generated. Basically, extra energy is measured as it passes through the customer’s meter on its way to the grid. The customer receives credit for their extra energy and draws from that credit in months when their consumption exceeds their production. Any credited energy that is not used by the customer is purchased by the utility on a predetermined date. In Wyoming, that date is the end of the calendar year, December 31. Unfortunately, that energy is purchased at the utility company’s “avoided cost” (slightly less than wholesale), so it’s best to design and size a solar array as to avoid any credit left at the “buy out” date. In an ideal situation that date, for a residential system, would be closer to the spring equinox.
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