The Net Metering Program in the St. Thomas/St. John District has reached its 10-megawatt aggregate capacity, and as a result the Division of Building Permits will no longer accept permit applications, acting Commissioner Jean-Pierre L. Oriol of the Department of Planning and Natural Resources announced Monday.
The announcment came in a news release from DPNR Monday afternoon.
Through net metering, individuals hooked to the territory’s power grids, can produce energy through solar, wind or other alternative means and put their excess energy on the grid. They receive credit on their utility bill for that energy. DPNR stopped taking applications for the net-metering program on St. Croix earlier this year, when that limit was met.
Because of the need to maintain a stable energy supply, a limit was placed on the amount of energy that could be contracted under net-metering.
Oriol added that applicants to the program who hold active permits face a time limit. The permits will expire and become null and void if work is not started 120 days from the date of the issuance. The commissioner can grant an extension if the permit holder submits a written request.
Residents can continue to submit applications for the installation of stand-alone renewable energy systems in both the St. Thomas/St. John and the St. Croix district, Oriol said. Those would be wind or solar energy systems of non-utility customers that have no interconnectivity to the utility grid whatsoever.
Further information can be obtained by contacting Bevan Smith Jr., director of Building Permits, at 340-773-1082 extension 2298.