(1) Within sixty business days of the effective date of this rule, each electrical company over which the commission has jurisdiction must file an interconnection service tariff for interconnections consistent with this chapter.
(2) Interconnection service includes only the terms and conditions that govern physical interconnection to the electrical company's delivery system and does not include sale or transmission of power by the interconnecting customer or retail service to the interconnecting customer.
(3) Tier 3 tariff requirements. Tariffs that govern the interconnection of Tier 3 generating facilities under this chapter must either:
(a) Offer service equivalent in all procedural and technical respects to the interconnection service the electrical company offers under the small generator interconnection provisions of its open access transmission tariff as approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC); or
(b) Comply with the terms of an "alternative interconnection service tariff" described in subsection (5) of this section.
(4) FERC Small Generator Interconnection Agreements. For purposes of this section, "small generator interconnection provisions" means the procedural and technical requirements established by the FERC in Standardization of Small Generator Interconnection Agreements and Procedures, Order No. 2006, 70 FR 34190 (June 13, 2005), FERC Stats. & Regs. ¶ 31,180 (2005) (Order No. 2006), order on reh'g, Order No. 2006-A, 70 FR 71760 (Nov. 30, 2005), FERC Stats. & Regs. ¶ 31,196 (2005), order on clarif'n, Order No. 2006-B, 71 FR 42587 (July 27, 2006), FERC Stats. & Regs. ¶ 61,046 (2006). "Small generator interconnection provisions" does not include the 10 kW inverter process required under the above-listed FERC regulations.
(5) Tier 3 alternative interconnection service tariff. If an electrical company demonstrates that the small generator interconnection provisions will impair service adequacy, reliability or safety or will otherwise be incompatible with its electric system, the electrical company may file a Tier 3 alternative interconnection service tariff. An alternative interconnection service tariff must meet the following requirements and be consistent with all provisions of this chapter:
(a) All interconnection customers must be treated equally without undue discrimination or preference.
(b) Electric companies must ensure that interconnection service will not impair safe, adequate and reliable electric service to its retail electric customers.
(c) Technical requirements for all interconnections must comply with IEEE, NESC, NEC, North American Electric Reliability Corporation, Western Electricity Coordinating Council and other applicable safety and reliability standards.
(d) Charges by the electrical company to the interconnection customer in addition to the application fee, if any, must be cost-based and consistent with generally accepted engineering practices. Unless an electrical company demonstrates by reference to its integrated resource plan prepared pursuant to WAC 480-100-238
, its conservation targets pursuant to RCW 19.285.040
, the studies it performs under WAC 480-108-120
, or other evidence that an interconnection will provide quantifiable benefits to the electrical company's other customers, an interconnecting customer must pay all costs made necessary by the requested interconnection service. Such costs include, but are not limited to, the cost of engineering studies, upgrades to the electric system made necessary by the interconnection, metering and insurance. If an electrical company demonstrates that an interconnection will produce quantifiable benefits for the electrical company's other customers, it may incur a portion of these costs for commission consideration for recovery in its general rates commensurate with such benefits. If after consideration of any costs approved by the commission for recovery in general rates the remaining costs are less than any amounts paid by the interconnection customer, the electrical company must refund the excess to the interconnection customer.
(e) Interconnection customers must be responsible for all operation, maintenance and code compliance for facilities and equipment on the customer's side of the point of common coupling.
(f) Interconnection service tariffs must describe:
(i) The process, timelines and cost of feasibility and facility impact studies the electrical company may require before allowing interconnection.
(ii) The prioritization or other processes by which the electrical company will manage multiple requests for interconnection service.
(g) Interconnection service tariffs must state:
(i) Specific time frames for electrical companies to respond to interconnection applications.
(ii) Specific time frames for interconnection customers to respond to study and interconnection agreements offered by the electrical company. Time frames must be adequate for the electrical company and the interconnection customer to have adequate opportunity to examine engineering studies and project design options.
(h) The electrical company must make knowledgeable personnel available to answer questions regarding applicability of the interconnection service tariff and otherwise provide assistance to a customer seeking interconnection service. The electrical company must comply with reasonable requests for information including relevant system studies, interconnection studies, and other materials useful for an interconnection customer to understand the circumstances of an interconnection at a particular point on the electric system, to the extent provision of such information does not violate confidentiality provisions of prior electrical company agreements.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 80.01.040
and 80.04.160. WSR 13-15-089 (Docket UE-112133, General Order R-571), § 480-108-080, filed 7/18/13, effective 8/18/13; WSR 07-20-059 (Docket UE-060649, General Order 545), § 480-108-080, filed 9/27/07, effective 10/28/07.]