Net metering in farming prevented by legal obstacle

Despite promising energy cost-cutting benefits for the agricultural sector, as has been pointed out by specialized studies, the implementation of photovoltaic systems through net metering procedures is being obstructed by current local law.

A legislative amendment made in 2011 does not permit photovoltaic system installations for land placed under a high-productivity category. This legal obstacle essentially prevents farmers from installing photovoltaic systems to cover the energy requirements of equipment, such as water pumps, for example.

The amendment, made to settle issues concerning land transfers in high-production areas, unintentionally affected previous PV rights for farming use.

HELAPCO, the Hellenic Association of Photovoltaic Companies, locally acronymed SEF, has forwarded a request to the Production Reconstruction, Environment and Energy Ministry for an amendment that will enable farmers to utilize the net metering system.

Net metering enables electricity consumers who generate their own power from an eligible on-site facility and deliver it to local distribution facilities to offset the electric energy provided by the utility during an applicable billing period.