Effective July 2014, our Connection Standard for Small Scale Parallel Inverter Energy Systems up to 30kVA promoted that the threshold on our main network would reduce to >3.5kVA, down from the current 5kVA. To align with the introduction of the National Energy Customer Framework (NECF), Ergon Energy will implement these new thresholds for exporting inverters from 1 July 2015:
• >3.5kVA for single and 2 phase premises on the main network
• >10kVA for a 3 phase inverter on an existing 3 phase premises on the main network
• >2kVA on SWER networks • >0kVA on Isolated networks
1. Non-export units don’t require an assessment
2. The higher threshold for a 3 phase inverter on a 3 phase premises on the main network provides a great incentive to the PV Industry to spread inverter capacity evenly where 3 phase supply already exists.
3. As highlighted in previous alerts, Reactive Power Control of 0.9 lagging will be mandatory on exporting inverters >2kVA on the main network applied for from 30 September 2015. It is highly recommended in those circumstances in the interim to enhance unit performance.
These thresholds are designed to reduce network impacts of Micro EG Units(1) as well as protect customers by increasing the likelihood their systems will operate correctly, assist with getting the most out of their system and meet Australian standards, while helping to reduce the incidence of installers being called back for performance issues. Please note, our assessment, and any subsequent approval, is not a guarantee a unit will operate effectively. Similarly, if an inverter capacity is below the threshold, that doesn’t imply Ergon Energy’s endorsement that it will operate effectively. It is primarily the installer’s responsibility in every case to do their testing to be confident the proposed unit will meet their customer’s performance expectations.
These new thresholds are forecast to quadruple the current volume of assessments, so we are allocating more assessors. While we intend to remain within the new NECF timeframes, there could be some delays in July and August as we ramp up and we appreciate your patience if that occurs.
Ergon Energy has also flagged in the past that assessment fees will be introduced as part of the move to the new regulatory period. While we do not plan to introduce fees at this time, should this change, we will communicate the new fee structure to you prior to its introduction.
(1) Includes Solar PV, batteries and other IES units