Florida Keys Electric Cooperative Association
Florida Keys Electric Cooperative Association
Florida Keys Electric Cooperative Association

FKEC Solar Interconnectivity:
Members with Solar Arrays Can Connect to Co-op Grid

FKEC member-consumers who have a Photovoltaic System and would like to apply for interconnection must complete an Interconnection Application and an Interconnection Agreement and return the completed forms to FKEC. You may access these forms online now:

Interconnection Application
Interconnection Agreement Tier 1 (for systems 10kw or less)
Interconnection Agreement Tier 2 (for systems greater than 10kw to 100kw or less)

On the roof of the interconnected Perrotti family home
On the roof of the interconnected Perrotti family home (from left):
Steven Grasley, Solaria (system designer); Erwin Fischer;
Chuck Meier, SALT - Sea Air and Land Technologies
(system installer); David Ritz, FKEC Board President;
John Louis Perrotti, Congresswoman Ileana Ros Lehtinen;
John Perrotti; Darral Smith (solar plumber extraordinaire);
Gail Perrotti; and Emily Rose Perrotti.

FKEC began offering solar interconnectivity in 2004, making it easy for solar homes to draw power from the local power grid while also producing solar energy. The program also allows FKEC to incorporate more solar power into its system by buying back the surplus generated by the solar homes.

As of August 2016, over 800,000 kilowatt-hours of solar-generated power was sold back to FKEC by our interconnected members, which now consist of 41 residential and 5 commercial accounts.

Interconnectivity is...

Interconnected customers are those who have their own home solar arrays (photovoltaic PV systems) to generate power while also being connected to FKEC’s grid. This interconnectivity allows a solar home to generate its own power and also draw power from the local system as needed. When a home produces an excess of electricity, FKEC buys the power back from the member-consumer at full retail price.

Interconnected members receive exactly the cost of each per-kilowatt-hour charge listed on their billing statements as a credit for all excess power generated by their PV systems.

Interconnected members receive a net meter electric bill which includes credits for power sold back to FKEC. To view an explanation of a net meter bill click here.

Energy Efficiency is the Key

Presenting interconnected member Mary Ellen Operchal with a refund check
CEO Scott Newberry (right) and Member Service Representative
T.J. Patterson (left) present interconnected member Mary Ellen
Operchal with a refund check for power generated by her
family's home solar array system.

Simply having a photovoltaic system installed at your home does not mean you will sell back power. Owners who are able to generate enough electricity to meet the needs of their home (or achieve a surplus) have gone to great lengths to make their homes highly efficient in order to consume minimal electricity.

While solar technology is advancing, energy efficiency is still the key to savings. Before installing a solar PV system, a homeowner should first make the house as energy efficient as possible.

Ten-to-One Ratio

Consider the 10:1 ratio principle before installing a residential solar array. Every one dollar you spend making your home energy efficient equals ten less dollars you will need to spend on solar panels to power your home.

It takes approximately 25 or more 175-watt solar panels to power an average Florida Keys home. Larger homes or inefficient homes would require more.

How Interconnectivity Works

When a new solar home is interconnected, a bi-directional meter is installed to measure the power flowing into and out of the home. Initially a manual disconnect switch was also required for all inverter based interconnected solar installations but FKEC has deemed it not necessary for systems 10 kW or less. FKEC has also eliminated the need to provide proof of liability insurance for these types of installations, though it is still recommended.

 

Florida Keys Electric Cooperative Association
Florida Keys Electric Cooperative Association