Spectrum dangles cost-savings with Meralco’s net-metering solution

Published December 7, 2021, 5:04 PM

by Myrna M. Velasco

Spectrum dangles cost-savings with Meralco’s net-metering solution

Myrna M. Velasco

Spectrum, which is a solar power company under Manila Electric Company (Meralco), is promising savings in the electric bills for those who will be avail of their offer for a net metering solution.

Net metering is a service offer or industry solution that will allow consumers to produce their own electricity. This set-up is known as “prosumers” where excess capacity produced by consumers can also be injected into the grid.

Typically, it’s the solar rooftop installations that are now thriving as “service offer” in the net metering program underpinned by government rules and regulations on the promotion of renewable energy (RE) in the country.

In Spectrum’s case, one example of ‘net metering solution’ it can showcase that has been reaping benefits – not just on cost savings and patronizing green energy source but also on ease of connection – was that of the family of environmental advocate and social entrepreneur Illac Diaz, who opted for solar rooftop installation in their Manila home.

According to the company, it installed a 9.24-kilowatt peak (kWp) solar panels in the house of Diaz’s parents. That “power of choice” he exercised in satisfying the electricity service needs of his folks, resulted in at least 50 percent cost savings (or a reduction to about P10,000 from P21,000 in their monthly electric bills) just three months after getting into the net metering program.

As Diaz narrated, “I energized their home with solar panels. At first, they were surprised and didn’t know what to expect. But later on, when the bills started coming in, they started to realize just what this was.”

He considers that plunge into the solar installation solution via the net metering program as “a gift that keeps on giving.”

As a customer, Diaz said, “It’s not about the cost, but the savings. You’re talking about half of the regular bill. And for parents who are really retired, it really makes a difference.”

Beyond the solar installation that will satiate the power service needs of his parents, Diaz noted that on periods when they have excess generation, they can also inject that capacity back into the load network of Meralco; and the cost of that surplus capacity will have offsetting scheme on their electric bills.

Besides the panel installation, Spectrum assisted in enrolling the account to Meralco’s net-metering program that then allows Diaz’s family to sell the excess energy generated by the solar panel that translated into additional income for the customer.

What Spectrum can guarantee is “seamless grid integration for solar installations,” according to Meralco, and it also aids its customers on their “enrollment to various programs – including net metering and zero export to maximize the customers’ benefits from the solar panels.”

In the experience of Diaz, he stated that Spectrum “takes care of net metering and zero export processing;” as well as in the processing of government permits, “so customers have less to worry about.”

Ferdinand O. Geluz, president and chief executive officer of Spectrum, said “the company aims to help customers realize maximum benefit from its offerings of solar energy solutions.”

He assured that “our products are of the highest quality as we use top tier panels and inverters which are compliant with global standards,” and the Meralco executive qualified this is in line with the company’s push for sustainable solutions that will then provide its customers with “the best products and to deliver to them the highest quality of service.”

By far, Geluz emphasized that Spectrum “offers tailor-fit solutions for industrial, commercial and residential customers through an in-depth understanding of energy consumption behaviors and strategic partnerships with world-class technology partners.”

As explained by Meralco, “for the connection cost, typically, there’s no additional cost in the distribution side to accommodate a net metering installation. However, if the solar facility is very large or much greater than the customer’s typical load, then additional capacity may be needed on the distribution side, which will be for the customer’s account.”

The utility firm added “there’s no standard costing for this and it will depend on the solar installation and the load in the area.”

 
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