Wednesday, July 30, 2014

NERSA Reasons for Decision (RFD): Small Scale Embedded Generation within Municipal Boundaries

In January 2012, the attention of AMEU members was drawn to the existence of a NERSA document “Standard Conditions for Small Scale (less than 100kW) Embedded Generation within Municipal Boundaries” The document was undated but referred to a decision of the Energy Regulator dated 22 September 2011, despite the fact that it had not been subject to the required public consultation process before being made a mandatory requirement.

In terms of the decision, municipalities were required to register and maintain a database of all small scale (<100kW) embedded generation within their areas and report to the Energy Regulator on an annual basis on a number of statistics related to this generation. It also states that `....these conditions are guidelines currently but the intention is to include them in the Licence conditions of the municipalities when they are renewed.’

Since that time, a number of meetings have been convened by various bodies (not NERSA) to discuss the implications of the document. Over the last year, experts from the GIZ office of the South-African - German Energy Programme (SAGEN) have conducted workshops to finalise a formal submission to NERSA on the matter. Arising from this process, comments from the SALGA/AMEU/ESKOM reference group on NERSA's Standard Conditions for Small Scale Embedded Generators were considered by the SALGA Municipal Trading Services Working Group at a meeting on 12 June 2014. The Working Group supported the proposed framework and the idea of engaging NERSA on the subject, subject to the final approval of the SALGA NEC (National Executive Committee). This approval was obtained on 3 July 2014 and the comments were presented to NERSA by a SALGA delegation on Wednesday 16 July 2014. NERSA officials welcomed the initiative and undertook to advise SALGA, in due course, of the way it intends to address the issues raised in the position paper.

A copy of the SALGA/AMEU/ESKOM reference group comments is available here.

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