Selling your electricity to the grid

If you are generating electricity and connected to the grid, there are a few ways of reaping financial rewards.  Some electricity suppliers will buy that which you are not using and is spilling onto the grid. Here we present the steps to get money for the renewable efforts and what money you might get.

 

To get paid for renewable energy

  • When you wind turbine or solar PV is fitted, it should have an Ofgem accredited generation meter.  This will tell you how much electricity your device has produced.
  • To put energy onto the grid, you will need to have the appropriate agreement with your Distributed Network Operator.
  • To obtain ROCs, you will need a schematic diagram of the electrics of your renewable generator.
  • Usually, you will need to be a customer of the energy company that you are going to supply.
  • As of 1st April 2010 a feed-in tariff was implemented in the UK. This replaced the previous ROC scheme. Find out more here.

The options

  • You receive payment for every unit that your generation meter says you generate.  This is regardless of how much of it you use. No export meter required.
  • You have an export meter fitted and you are paid only for the amount of electricity that goes to the grid.  More on export meters here.
  • You supply the energy company with you total generation reading. They assume that you will use a percentage of this and pay you for the rest.  No need for an additional export meter.
  • Your generated energy earns you ROCs.  You appoint the energy company as your agent; they obtain the ROCs for you then buy them from you.  This might be included in the rate they pay for the units of electricity you generate [more on claiming ROCs here].
  • If you want to sell your ROCs separately, you will want to consider whether the price you get in worth the installation of the export meter and the hassle that this seems to involve.  The value of ROCs is based on the buy-out price set by Ofgem.  For 1st April 2008 – 31st March 2009, it is £35.76.  One ROC is currently awarded for each 1MWh generated in an obligations period (one year).

 

Potential buyers of your energy

There are a couple of big energy companies and a few green energy specialists who will be interested in buying your electricity.  Either, it fits with their eco-credentials, their marketing stance or helps with their Renewables Obligations.  Here are those that we can find, their contact details and what they are currently offering.  All this seems to be very open to change so it is worth checking their websites.

 

npowerjuice logo

01905 340 646

npower will assume that you will export 60% of your energy if it was generated by wind turbine and 50% if it was generated by PV.  You provide them with the total you generated.  They will pay you for the amount they assume exported at a rate of 12p unit of PV and 10p per unit of wind energy.  They will not require you to relinquish your ROCs.  You can appoint them as your agent, supply them will the relevant information and they will pay for them at the buy-out price.

 

EDF logo

0800 051 1905

Edf do not have many details on their website of the prices they will pay you and suggest it is best to call them for the current options.  We found them to be buying your total generated electricity + the ROCs at 5p/kWh if your generator is rated as 5kWp, 4.5p/kWh for larger installations.  Alternatively, for generators upto 10kWp, they will buy just the electricity you export at 7.6p/kWh.  This will require you to have an export meter but you will not have to relinquish your ROCs. 

 

ecotricity logo

0845 555 7100

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Electricity generated by wind turbine, PV or small hydro, by systems rated upto 10kW can be sold to ecotricity.  Starting from the beginning of February 2009, they will pay 12p/kWh for the total generated electricity and the ROCs. 

 

Good Energy Logo

Using the reading from a total generation meter, Good Energy will 15p per kWh for everything that you produce + the ROCs. Quite excitingly for those with or considering thermal solar, Good Energy are trying to find a way to reward you for your eco-efforts and, at the same time, off-set their new gas offering.  This is currently a test scheme.  Using the size of your panels, orientation, angle and position, they will estimate how much heat you should be generating and work out how much to pay you.  For more information, please see here or e-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 

Green Energy logo

0845 456 9550 or speak to Sharon on 01920 483046

Green Energy is an unusual energy company in that their customers become their shareholders. They pay at two rates depending on the size of your generator:

  • small scale (under 6kW)  -  a flat rate of 10p for every unit generated + ROCs, including the units used on site. Only generation meter required.
  • larger scale (6-30kW)  - 8.5p for the units exported through an export meter and 4.5p per unit generated for the ROCs minus a daily standing charge of 15p for export to the grid.  You could opt to obtain your ROCs and sell them to someone else.

 

Getting an OFGEM accredited export meter

Electricity meter

The list of OFGEM accredited generation meters can be found here (PDF). Second hand OFGEM accredited single phase meters can be found on Universal Meter Services for as little as £5 and new ones for £25.

 

 

More info

There's a good list of the grid-exporting offers available over at Paul's Alternative Energy website and West Wales Eco Centre, which we drew on in our research. The Times also published a useful article, "Get paid for making your own electricity".

 

Distribution network operators

In order to be connected to the grid, you will need to have agreement with the people who run the National Grid in your area.  These are the distribution (or distributed) network operators.  There is a list of them here .