The Department of Public Utilities (DPU) is investigating how to improve distributed energy resource planning to further the Commonwealth’s progress towards achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions. Currently, a distributed generation (DG) facility whose interconnection triggers an upgrade of the electric power system (EPS) must pay for the full cost of that upgrade. These upgrades can be expensive and require extensive system planning and time to construct. In D.P.U. 20-75-B, the DPU established a new, provisional framework for planning and funding essential upgrades to the EPS.
The provisional framework allows the electric distribution companies to file capital investment project (CIP) proposals with the DPU. These proposals limit the interconnection costs allocated to each DG facility. Under the provisional design, ratepayers will help fund the initial construction of these EPS upgrades. Ratepayers will be reimbursed over time from fees charged to future DG facilities that are able to interconnect due to the prior upgrades. The DPU will review each CIP on a case-by-case basis for approval, denial, or modification.
This guide summarizes the details of the provisional system planning program. A more detailed summary is available as an attachment below.