La Plata Electric Association - Net Metering

June 29, 2007


La Plata Electric Association (LPEA), an electric cooperative utility, offers net metering* to residential and commercial customers who generate electricity using wind or solar resources. Systems up to 25 kilowatts (kW) in capacity are eligible. The system must be intended to offset part or all of the customer's electricity requirements at the same location, and it may not be used to offset electric consumption at another location. Net metering is accomplished by using a single, bi-directional meter that measures kilowatt-hour usage and production. Net metering is available on a first-come, first-served basis until the rated generating capacity owned and operated by eligible customer-generators in LPEA's service territory reaches 1% of the utility's aggregate customer peak demand. Customers with net excess generation (NEG) at the end of a monthly billing period are credited for the excess at the utility's avoided-cost rate. The credit will be carried over to the following month until the end of the calendar year, at which point customers will receive a check from the utility, at its avoided-cost rate, for any remaining NEG. * LPEA offers "true" net metering to its customers. In 2002, Colorado enacted legislation (C.R.S. 40-9.5-304 et seq.) requiring the state's electric cooperatives to offer "net metering" to customers. However, the term "net metering" is a misnomer in this particular law. Under the law, customers receive a lower rate (the utility's avoided-cost) for all electricity generated, while customers must pay the full retail rate for all electricity they purchase from utilities. This practice, commonly known as "dual metering," is much less favorable to customer-generators than "true" net metering.

Program Overview

Implementing Sector: Utility
Category: Regulatory Policy
State: Colorado
Incentive Type: Net Metering
Web Site:
Start Date:
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
  • Solar Photovoltaics
  • Wind (All)
  • Biomass
  • Hydroelectric
  • Wind (Small)
Applicable Utilities: 25 kW
System Capacity Limit: 1% of utility's aggregate customer peak demand
Aggregate Capacity Limit: Credited at avoided-cost rate to customer's next bill; utility pays customer for any unused NEG at beginning of each calendar year
Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits: Yes


Name: Dan Harms
Organization: La Plata Electric Association
Address: 45 Stewart St.
Durango CO 81302
Phone: (970) 247-5786
Name: Richard Archuleta
Organization: La Plata Electric Association
Address: 45 Stewart St.
Durango CO 81302
Phone: ((97) 0) -247-

This information is sourced from DSIRE; the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University.