Wisconsin utility regulators appointed a committee Thursday to advise the agency on updates to the rules on rooftop solar panels and other customer-owned energy sources.
The Public Service Commission is revising administrative codes governing “distributed generation facilities” — defined under state law as generators smaller than 15 megawatts located near where the energy is used that support the power grid.
The update is one of dozens of actions outlined in a report by Gov. Tony Evers’ task force on climate change, which said the “outdated and ambiguous” regulations have resulted in standards that differ from one utility to another.
The committee includes representatives from each of the five largest investor-owned utilities, municipal and cooperative utility trade associations, renewable energy groups, the state’s consumer advocate, electric manufacturers and contractors.
The PSC also approved a rule change that will treat excess industrial heat as renewable energy if it is used for another purpose, such as generating electricity.
The change was required to bring the administrative code into alignment with a 2017 law that allows manufacturers to sell renewable energy credits for electricity generated with excess heat.
The plant, which would produce enough electricity to supply about 80,000 typical Wisconsin homes, is one of six solar farms that will be owned and operated by Alliant Energy as part of the utility’s plan to replace its coal-fired generators.
The Democratic governor announced Friday that Sandy Naas of Ashland and Sharon Adams of Milwaukee will replace Frederick Prehn and Julie Anderson, whose terms on the Natural Resources Board expire Saturday.