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The U.S. Department of Energy and the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center are excited to announce that a new, modernized DSIRE is under construction. The new version of DSIRE will offer significant improvements over the current version, including expanded data accessibility and an array of new tools for site users. The new DSIRE site will be available in December 2014. Staff are currently working hard on the new version of DSIRE but are also maintaining the content of the current version of DSIRE. Thank you for your continued support and patience during this transition. We hope you are as excited for December as we are!

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North Carolina

Incentives/Policies for Renewables & Efficiency

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Net Metering   

Last DSIRE Review: 09/04/2014
Program Overview:
State: North Carolina
Incentive Type: Net Metering
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies: Photovoltaics, Landfill Gas, Wind, Biomass, Hydroelectric, Hydrogen, Anaerobic Digestion, Small Hydroelectric, Tidal Energy, Wave Energy, Fuel Cells using Renewable Fuels
Applicable Sectors: Commercial, Industrial, Residential, Nonprofit, Schools, Local Government, State Government, Tribal Government, Fed. Government, Agricultural, Institutional
Applicable Utilities:Investor-owned utilities
System Capacity Limit:1 MW
Aggregate Capacity Limit:No limit specified
Net Excess Generation:Credited to customer's next bill at retail rate; granted to utility at beginning of summer billing season
REC Ownership:Utility owns RECs (unless customer chooses to net meter under a time of use tariff with demand charges)
Meter Aggregation:Not addressed
Authority 1:
Date Enacted:
NCUC Order, Docket No. E-100, Sub 83
Authority 2:
Date Enacted:
NCUC Order, Docket No. E-100, Sub 83
Authority 3:
Date Enacted:
NCUC Order, Docket No. E-100, Sub 83
Authority 4:
Date Enacted:
Date Effective:
NCUC Order, Docket No. E-100, Sub 83

The North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC) established net metering rules for the state’s three investor-owned utilities -- Duke Energy, Progress Energy and Dominion North Carolina Power -- in 2005. The NCUC subsequently amended the rules, most recently in 2009.

Eligibility and Availability 

Net metering is available to all customers who own and operate systems that generate electricity using solar energy, wind energy, hydropower, ocean or wave energy, biomass resources, combined heat and power (CHP) which uses waste heat derived from eligible renewable resources, or hydrogen derived from eligible renewable resources.* Customers may net meter under any available rate schedule. However, customers that choose to take service under any tariff other than a time-of-use demand (TOUD) tariff must surrender to the utility all renewable energy credits (RECs) associated with the customer’s generation – with no compensation for the customer.

The individual system capacity limit is one megawatt (MW). There is no aggregate capacity limit on net-metered systems. For residential systems up to 20 kilowatts (kW) and non-residential systems up to 100 kW in capacity, utilities may not charge any standby charges or any additional metering charges other than those charged to customers who do not net meter under the applicable rate schedule. For larger systems, utilities are allowed to impose standby charges consistent with approved standby rates applicable to other customer-owned generation.

Net Excess Generation

In general, any customer net excess generation (NEG) during a billing period is carried forward to the following billing period at the utility’s full retail rate, and then surrendered to the utility – with no compensation for the customer – at the beginning of each summer billing season. However, the treatment of generation and NEG for customers on TOU-demand tariffs is more complicated. For these customers, on-peak generation is used to offset on-peak consumption, and off-peak generation is used to offset off-peak consumption. Any remaining on-peak generation is then used to offset off-peak consumption. Off-peak generation may only be used to offset off-peak consumption.

Utilities must file with the NCUC annual reports indicating the number of net-metering applicants and customer-generators, the aggregate capacity of net-metered generation, the size and types of renewable-energy systems, the amounts of on-peak and off-peak generation credited and ultimately granted to the utility, and the reasons for any rejections or removals of customer-generators from a net-metering arrangement.

* In July 2006, the NCUC extended net metering to eligible systems with battery storage. "Gaming” a net-metering arrangement by using battery storage to manipulate a TOU tariff is not allowed.

  Kennie Ellis
North Carolina Utilities Commission
Public Staff
430 N. Salisbury Street
Raleigh, NC 27611
Phone: (919) 733-2267
Fax: (919) 733-4744
Web Site:
  Dan Conrad
North Carolina Utilities Commission
430 N. Salisbury Street
Raleigh, NC 27611
Phone: (919) 733-0835
Web Site:
NCSU - home
Disclaimer: The information presented on the DSIRE web site provides an unofficial overview of financial incentives and other policies. It does not constitute professional tax advice or other professional financial guidance, and it should not be used as the only source of information when making purchasing decisions, investment decisions or tax decisions, or when executing other binding agreements. Please refer to the individual contact provided below each summary to verify that a specific financial incentive or other policy applies to your project.

While the DSIRE staff strives to provide the best information possible, the DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. make no representations or warranties, either express or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness, reliability or suitability of the information. The DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. disclaim all liability of any kind arising out of your use or misuse of the information contained or referenced on DSIRE Web pages.

Copyright 2014 - 2015 North Carolina State University, under NREL Subcontract No. XEU-0-99515-01. Permission granted only for personal or educational use, or for use by or on behalf of the U.S. government. North Carolina State University prohibits the unauthorized display, reproduction, sale, and/or distribution of all or portions of the content of the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) without prior, written consent.