Connecting renewable energy to the grid
Renewable energy is produced from sources that are constantly replenished and will never run out. Renewable Energy such as solar, wind, geothermal, hydropower and sustainable biomass use technologies to convert energy into electricity.
For those members who are interested in owning their own wind turbine or solar array, we appreciate the opportunity to work with you. Our goal is to protect the safety of our cooperative personnel and members, while offering reliable and affordable electricity. Because an interconnected system can affect the safety and reliability of the distribution system, there is an interconnection process and technical requirements that address those concerns.
Below is a list of forms and information you will need to to interconnect your generation system. An application must be approved before construction begins. Your system can not be connected to the grid until it passes state inspection and the interconnection is approved by Nobles Cooperative Electric. Failure to contact the cooperative from the beginning may lead to unexpected costs and delays in interconnection.
Below are guidelines and forms that are applicable for everyone, no matter the size or type of system
Nobles Cooperative Electric members who are interested in owning their own wind turbine or solar array should access the cooperative's NOVA Power Portal for the paperwork and materials needed.
A Distributed Energy Resource application must be approved before construction can begin.
If your system has an inverter and is less than 20 kW, you will follow the Simplified Process.
If your system is greater than 20 kW, but less than 4 MW, you will follow the Fast Track Process.
If your system is greater than 4 MW, but less than 10 MW, you will follow the Study Process.
Documents to review when considering a solar system:
- 10 Steps to Take Before Installing Solar
- Solar Systems: What Size is Right for You?
- Solar Ownership Options
- Solar Energy Frequency Asked Questions
- Questions to Ask a Solar Contractor
- Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit
Thinking of a Renewable Energy investment?
Before you make a big investment in a wind turbine or solar panel do your homework and ask lots of questions. If you are given expected performance numbers by a salesman, check them with your own numbers. What do they claim for kWh output? How does that line up with actual results from similar projects? Sales claims of kWh production that don't match what has historically been seen can make a big difference in payback and what you hope to see out of your project. Is the system UL pre-certified? Ask for a UL certificate. If not, you could incur added costs. Learn about the company and the individual you are dealing with. How long have they been in business? Check with the Minnesota Better Business Bureau regarding possible complaints.
Compare the cost of driving an electric vehicle
To see the cost of fueling a vehicle with electricity compared to a similar vehicle that runs on gasoline visit www.energy.gov/eGallon.