Small-scale distributed generation net metering gets go ahead in Bolivia

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Bolivia’s Ministry of Hydrocarbons and Energies has issued regulations to encourage the uptake of small-scale distributed generation.

The new regulations, which came into effect on March 24, enable users of small-scale renewables such as rooftop solar PV to feed their excess generation to the local distribution network and be compensated for their input.

Presenting the regulations, Bolivia’s Minister of Hydrocarbons and Energy Franklin Molina said they will enable Bolivians to begin to be active players in the generation of electricity with environmentally friendly sources.

“The impact will be both economic and environmental. Bolivian families will save or generate more resources with their own electricity. At the same time, the use of fossil fuel in generation processes is displaced, which leads to the reduction of CO2 emissions.”

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The regulations establish three classes of systems to operate under the scheme. These are classified as distributed nanogeneration for systems up to 10kW, microgeneration greater than 10kW up to 50kW, and minigeneration over 50kW to 350kW.

Authorisations for the connection of distributed generation will be made by the distribution company and installations are required to be carried out by specialised companies that have been registered and authorised.

The tariffs for feed-in will be set by the national electricity regulator with a minimum cost equivalent to the current minimum cost of the energy produced in the National Interconnected System and a maximum equivalent to the final distribution cost, which will be applied based on the balance between the consumption and hourly energy injected into the distribution network.

The Ministry anticipates during the first year of application of the measure that there will be economic reactivation of 400 small and medium-sized companies dedicated to the installation of solar PV systems.

“It is expected to generate around 1,300 direct and indirect jobs, during the first year, to reach more than 3,000. It is time to reactivate the economy,” commented Molina.