Netmetering and Buy-All / Sell-All
The utilities operating in Northwest lower Michigan have very different policies for solar.
Consumers Energy: Passage of SB 437 and 438 has created uncertainty for Consumers Energy customers. The current true net metering program is in place for at least two years and customers will be "grandfathered" for at least 10 years.
When rules for the new laws are issued in 2019, the new "Distributed Generation" system will be in play. The 2009 MPSC ruling on identical wording in PA295 was that systems under 20kW are entitled to true net metering, even though the law says otherwise. In 2018 and 2019 this issue will be argued between the regulated utilities (Consumers and DTE) and the Public Service Commission.
The optimistic outcome is that true net metering will be preserved. The pessimistic view is that the letter of the law will be upheld and true net metering will be ended. The law, as passed, reduces the credits for excess generation from retail (15c/kWh) to "Locational Marginal Price" (3c/kWh). This, of course, will dramatically change the equation for solar in Michigan.
Cherryland has gutted their net metering program by cutting the excess generation credit in half. This makes Cherryland net metering a very long term investment.
However, they created a new program sponsored by their power supplier Wolverine Power. The Buy-All / Sell-All program pays 10 cents per kWh for 20 years and should be financially attractive for most customers, especially small and medium agricultural sites.
Great Lakes Energy is a Wolverine coop and will soon follow Cherryland.
Traverse City Light and Power has a traditional true net metering program.