Considering Renewable Energy for your Home or Business

What is Net Energy Metering?

Net Energy Metering, or NEM, involves a two way connection between SDG&E's electricity grid and your electricity generation system.

If you have an electricity generation system that uses a renewable fuel source at your home or business, such as solar, and your system produces more energy than you use, you can earn bill credits for excess power that flows from your system to SDG&E's electricity grid.  

At times when the renewable fuel source is unavailable or limited, like when the sun isn't shining or on cloudy days, and your system isn't producing enough electricity to meet your needs, you will likely need to use SDG&E as a source of back up power or rely on the credits that you may have generated at an earlier time.

​This give and take is referred to as Net Energy Metering or NEM.

Any SDG&E residential or commercial customer who generates at least some of their electricity with a renewable energy source is eligible to participate in the NEM program.

There are two primary eligibility requirements for NEM:

  1. Your electricity generating system must be fueled by solar, wind, or a different renewable source that is eligible for NEM. Other renewable fuels include, but not limited to, biomass, geothermal, and small hydro.
  2. ​Your system must comply with the rules and regulations for interconnecting customer-owned generation to SDG&E's grid.

There is a state mandated cap on NEM and the rules for customers with systems connected before the NEM cap was met are slightly different than the rules for customers that connect afterwards.

On June 29, 2016, the NEM Cap was reached in SDG&E's service territory.

Customers with authorized interconnections established before this date are generally subject to the provisions of Schedule NEM. *

Customers with authorized interconnections established after this date are generally subject to the provisions of the NEM Successor Tariff or NEM-ST. **

Net metering allows you to get retail value for the electricity you produce by permitting you to put excess electricity you over-generate back into the electric grid and retrieve it later. Your excess electricity now offsets electricity you would otherwise have to buy. Since your solar energy system is connected to SDG&E's distribution system, you're helping to reduce the demand for electricity and supporting a cleaner energy future.

As Southern Californians increasingly integrate batteries into their photovoltaic (PV) systems, it’s good to understand how solar and storage work together and how this might affect your bill. Statewide rules have been adopted by the California Public Utilities Commission to ensure that Net Energy Metering (NEM) generation credits are earned only from electricity produced by the PV system, and not for energy delivered from the SDG&E’s electrical grid that is used to charge the battery. We’re here to help you stay informed, so you can make the right choices for your system and lifestyle.

If you have an energy storage battery paired with a solar generator, the maximum level of NEM credits you can earn is based on an electricity production estimate of what your PV system is capable of producing. According to the rules, this is how we identify exported energy that is not eligible for NEM credits under the NEM program. If you use a battery at your home or business, we encourage you to program it accordingly. Learn More