New Calif. ISO Rules Would Bring Rooftop Solar To Wholesale Energy Market


The California Independent System Operator Corp. (ISO) board of governors have approved rules and processes that, for the first time, will enable aggregated distributed energy resources, such as rooftop solar, to participate in the wholesale energy market.

According to the ISO, these rules will set a pathway for smaller resources to be bundled by utilities or third parties and collectively meet the half-megawatt minimum requirement for participating in the energy market.

‘With the rapidly evolving grid and quantum growth in distributed generation, this framework for integrating smaller renewable resources onto the high-voltage grid demonstrates a significant step in redesigning our energy future with lower carbon emissions and helping California meet its clean energy goals,’ says Steve Berberich, president and CEO of the ISO. ‘This proposal encourages innovation and entrepreneurs to explore opportunities within the wholesale market by combining resources that individually would be too small to participate on their own.’

The proposal approved by the board also outlines how distributed energy resources aggregations would be metered and allows service providers to act as scheduling coordinators to interact with the ISO through a single point of contact. In turn, the ISO will have the ability to select a broader array of resources when balancing supply with demand and integrate more renewables on to the power grid.

In addition to rooftop solar and energy storage, plug-in electric vehicles and demand response are at the forefront of the distributed energy revolution in which consumers can use and sell power, according to the ISO.

Supporting tariff language will be developed and submitted to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for its approval later this year.

The board memo outlining the proposal can be found here.

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