Last Updated June 19, 2019
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
New York was the second state to adopt uniform interconnection standards for distributed generation (DG) systems. The New York Public Service Commission (PSC) originally adopted Standard Interconnection Requirements (SIR) for systems up to 300 kilowatts (kW) in capacity in December 1999. The Standard Interconnection Requirements (SIR) have subsequently been amended several times since, necessitated by changing net metering rules and other legislations. Most recently, the rules were updated on January 2017 which require the developers to demonstrate that they have obtained site control while applying for interconnection. During April to December in 2016 more than 2,000 projects between 50kW and 2MW filed for interconnection leading to interconnection application backlog. This rule is designed to help clear out this backlog of inactive proposals and allow more advanced projects to be completed.
The SIR rules apply to systems up to five megawatts (MW) in capacity connected in parallel with the distribution system located in the service area of one of New York's six investor-owned local electric utilities: Central Hudson Gas and Electric, Consolidated Edison (Con Edison), New York State Electric & Gas, Niagara Mohawk (d/b/a National Grid), Orange and Rockland Utilities, and Rochester Gas and Electric. Generation facilities that are not designed to operate in parallel with the utility’s electrical systems are not subject to these requirements.
The SIR addresses technical guidelines for interconnection and application procedures, with two separate sets of interconnection procedures and processes.
Expedited Process: As amended in 2013, systems up to 50 kW are eligible for a simplified or expedited six-step process. Systems up to 300 kW may be eligible for this provided that the inverter based system is UL 1741 certified and tested. Systems proposed to be installed in underground network areas may be required to submit additional information and may subject to a longer review process. Systems of 50 kW or less are not charged an application fee.
Basic Process: This process applies to all systems larger than 50 kW up to 5 MW, and systems between 50 kW and 300 kW that have not been certified and tested in accordance with UL 1741, applicants must use the basic 11-step process for interconnection as detailed in the SIR.
Both processes cover the initial inquiry to final utility acceptance for interconnection and include interconnection timelines, responsibility for interconnection costs, and procedures for dispute resolution. The appendices contain a standard contract and standard application forms. Utilities are also required to maintain a web-based system for providing information on the status of interconnection requests to customers and contractors. The SIR contain minimum content requirements for this information system, and also require that utilities offer a web-based application process for systems of 25 kW or less.
A current list of type-tested equipment is available on the PSC's DG website. Certified, inverter-based systems up to 25 kW are not required to have an external disconnect switch. The requirements specifically state that utilities are not permitted to require customers to purchase general liability insurance; however, the PSC does encourage distributed generation owners to purchase insurance for their own protection.
Energy storage: The Standard Interconnection Requirement (SIR) was updated in October 2018 to include standards for interconnecting energy storage systems up to 5 MW AC. These standards apply to new hybrid projects, stand-alone projects, addition to energy storage system to an existing distributed generation facility, and changing of operating mode of existing hybrid or stand alone facility. Interconnection fee is calculated at $500 plus $4/kW capped at $3,000. The utility will have 20 days to perform the review and provide any modifications for control systems deemed necessary. The design of the system must include automatic disconnect device that will disconnect from the grid in case of power outage.