Connection, metering and settlement
1. Who is responsible for paying for the cost of connecting my microFIT project to the grid?
You are responsible for the cost of the connection necessary to get your electricity from your generation project to the distribution system.
2. How do I get my microFIT project connected to the grid?
Your local distribution company (LDC) is responsible for connecting and metering your microFIT project. You must submit a connection request to your LDC (with your microFIT reference number) and meet the requirements of your LDC to connect to the electricity grid before your LDC will install your generation meter. Your LDC will connect your project to the grid when you have:
- received all necessary approvals including Connection Authorization to connect from the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA)
- entered into a connection agreement with the LDC
- paid the LDC for the connection and metering costs.
Each LDC has its own “Micro-Generator Connection Request Form”. You may be asked to wait 30 days from the time you submit a microFIT Program application before submitting your connection request to your LDC.
3. What is an ESA Certificate of Inspection?
A Certificate of Inspection is issued to an Applicant when a project is complete and has passed a final inspection to verify compliance with the Ontario Electrical Safety Code (OESC).
4. What is an ESA Connection Authorization?
A Connection Authorization is issued when an inspection has been undertaken by the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) to verify compliance with the Ontario Electrical Safety Code (OESC). Once compliance with the OESC has been verified, the ESA will issue a Connection Authorization to the Local Distribution Company, which indicates that the installation is safe to connect to the grid. The Connection Authorization does not indicate that the electrical work taking place at the site is complete.
5. Why is the IESO requesting a Connection Authorization from the ESA?
The IESO requires a copy of the Connection Authorization issued by the ESA as evidence that the project has passed the service inspection and is ready to connect to the grid.
6. How do I obtain a copy of the Connection Authorization for my project?
An applicant can obtain a copy of the Connection Authorization by submitting a Freedom of Information request to the ESA.
7. What is the estimated timeline for the ESA to issue a Connection Authorization after an inspection has been scheduled?
An ESA inspection typically occurs within days of a request, but there are locations where this timing may vary. To determine when the next available inspection day is for
your area, please refer to the schedules that can be found at www.esasafe.com. Emergency inspection work may also affect timelines. It is important that you do this early to ensure that you meet the 180 day timeline of your Application Approval Notice as no extensions will be granted.
8. Are there any micro generation specific rules in the Ontario Electrical Safety Code that I should be aware of for my project?
The Alternative Generation Safety section found at www.esasafe.com has detailed information about electrical guidelines, technical information and applying for an electrical inspection. The site also provides a guideline intended to simplify and provide basic advice to home, farm and business owners considering the installation of Inverter-Based Micro-Generating Facilities.
9. What is a connection request?
A connection request is the application to your local distribution company (LDC) to connect your generation project to the distribution system. You must use the LDC’s existing form. You must also submit your connection request form to your LDC and you must provide your microFIT reference number on the connection request form to the LDC. We recommend that you consult your LDC prior to submitting a connection request form to learn about potential fees and charges that might be applied under different connection configurations.
10. What are the different connection configurations to the distribution system?
Your microFIT project can either be “directly connected” to the electricity distribution system or “indirectly connected”. A direct connection is where your project is connected to the grid separately from any other customer or building.
An indirect connection is where your project is connected to an existing building that is connected to the distribution system. Indirectly connected projects can only be connected to an existing load customer.
Please refer to the microFIT Rules to learn more about the different connection configurations.
11. What is a connection agreement?
For micro-scale projects no greater than 10 kW, a connection agreement refers to the “Micro-Embedded Generation Facility Connection Agreement” (as prescribed by the Ontario Energy Board’s Distribution System Code) between a local distribution company and the owner of the generation project. You must sign this agreement before your project can be connected to the distribution system. Also, the name on the connection agreement must be the same name that is on the local distribution company customer account and the microFIT contract.
12. How will my renewable energy project be connected?
Your renewable energy project(s) will be connected to the grid through an electricity meter that will be different from the meter that measures your consumption. This meter will allow your local electricity distribution company to measure the electricity you generate and pay you accordingly.