For Immediate Release
November 8, 2016
ST. JOHN’S, NL – The Newfoundland and Labrador Environmental Industry Association (NEIA) met on Thursday, November 3rd with the Minister of Natural Resources, Hon. Siobhan Coady, to discuss the provincial government’s progress on the implementation of net metering policy in the province.
Net metering is an energy policy which permits customers to use small-scale renewable energy sources to feed power into the distribution system during periods when they generate excess power – and draw power from the grid when their generation does not fully meet their needs. Net metering, paired with investments in renewable energy systems, can reduce energy costs for customers and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
“Net metering is an important energy policy not just for our members, but also for energy consumers and the economy at large,” said Kieran Hanley, NEIA’s Interim Executive Director. “It allows businesses in Newfoundland and Labrador to provide their green energy solutions locally; removes barriers to competitiveness for companies in comparison to those in other jurisdictions; and supports local firms in testing and marketing their products and services internationally where small scale green energy compatibility is expected of them.” Hanley noted that net metering is regularly identified as one of the industry’s most pressing issues, most recently at Newleef – the province’s green economy conference – earlier in October.
“We were pleased with the result of our meeting,” said Hanley. “Minister Coady re-affirmed a strong commitment on behalf of this government for the introduction of net metering. The Minister and her officials provided us with details on where the programming is in the process and what the pathway is for implementation.”
Triggering the implementation process is a submission from the utilities of proposed net metering programming to the Public Utilities Board (PUB). The Department of Natural Resources indicated it has been working closely with the utilities on program specifics, and fully expects submissions to be made to the PUB by the end of 2016. The PUB will review the proposed programming, and a decision is expected within a matter of months.
“At this stage we are satisfied with the Department’s focus on this file,” said Hanley, adding that continued open communication between Government and industry is key in ensuring expectations are managed and that calculated investments can be made by the private sector.
“This is one of several important opportunities for green economic growth within energy and natural resource sectors,” noted Hanley. “Minister Coady indicated her department is eager to speak with the environmental industry on a variety of subjects, and we look forward to having those discussions in the near future.”
NEIA is a not-for-profit association of businesses that promotes the growth and development of the green economy in Newfoundland and Labrador. NEIA has over 200 members. More information can be found at http://www.neia.org.
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