Distributed generation is equipment used to generate electricity for your own use, which is connected to the Aurora Energy electricity distribution network and is capable of supplying electricity back into the network. Examples include solar photovoltaic panels, small wind turbines and mini-hydro.
Aurora Energy has three Standards based on the Code which are designed to help people wishing to connect distributed generation to the Aurora Energy network.
The connection of distributed generation is regulated by the Electricity Industry Participation Code 2010, Part 6, Connection of Distributed Generation.
The application and connection process
For systems up to 10kW capacity, typically solar panels, the process is as follows.
You must apply on the appropriate application form, either under Part 1 or Part 1A of the Code, completing all details requested, to enable us to accurately identify the electrical location of your proposed generator. We will advise you if an application fee is payable.
Aurora Energy will assess the impact your generation will have on our network. You may wish to generate more power than the transformer at your gate is designed to transport, or have neighbours who are also generating into the same transformer.
Aurora Energy promotes the safety of staff and contractors who may be working on its networks. We also need to ensure safety of the general public and the integrity of the network at all times. Accordingly, Aurora Energy must know the location and capacity of all connected generation, and have the ability to isolate the generating plant from the network from time to time for operational and maintenance purposes.
We will advise if your application is approved under Part 1 within 10 working days, or if under Part 1A within two working days of receiving it. Once approved, you or your contractors can install and test your system.
Aurora Energy requires a copy of the electrical Certificate of Compliance and the Commissioning declaration to be provided as soon as possible after completion, before the system is permanently switched on. The Code requires that all generation installations must have metering which separately records imported and exported energy. You or your contractor must request a metering upgrade (if required) from your electricity retailer.
Applications for the connection of distributed generation over 10kW capacity are subject to the regulated application fee, and have longer times to process under the Code. This is because they require more detailed technical investigation into their effect on the network. When connecting distributed generation to our network, there may be costs associated with design and reinforcement of the existing network. If network reinforcement is required, the costs, design and schedule for this project work will need to be factored into your installation planning.
- Small Scale Distributed Generation Connection Application (PDF)
- Large Scale Distributed Generation Connection Application (PDF)
- 10kW or Less No Charge
- More than 10kW but less than 100kW in total $500
- 100kW or above in total, but less than 1MW $1,000
- 1MW and above $5,000
Fee for testing and Inspection (at Aurora Energy’s discretion)
- Above 10kW but less than 100kW in total $120
- 100kW and above $1,200
List of Approved Inverters
View a list of inverters approved for the use on Aurora Energy’s electricity network here.
If you have any queries about distributed generation, please email email@example.com
Statutory, regulatory and safety requirements
Distributed generation must meet all relevant statutory and regulatory requirements and comply with all applicable safety standards. If you connect distributed generation to our network, safety equipment and procedures must be put in place to ensure safe interaction between your distributed generator and our network.
We recommend that you familiarise yourself with the following documents:
- Guide to Connection of Small Scale Distributed Generation ≤10kW (PDF)
- Guide to Connection of Large Scale Distributed Generation >10kW (PDF)
- Distributed Generation Technical Requirements (PDF)
- AS/NZS 3000 - Electrical Installations (known as the Australian/New Zealand Wiring Rules), which you can purchase and download from www.ess.govt.nz or view for free at your public library.
- AS 4777 which provides standards for connecting inverter-based systems and is a useful guide for installing other forms of generation. You can purchase and download it from www.standards.com.au or view it for free at your public library.
- The installation of the generation systems needs to comply with AS/NZS 4777.1:2015 “Grid connection of energy systems via inverters – Part 1: Installation requirements”.
- The inverter system needs to comply with AS/NZS 4777.2:2015 “Grid connection of energy systems via inverters – Part 2: Inverter requirements”.
For small scale distributed generation (≤10kW), the Electricity Authority’s Regulated Terms from the Electricity Industry Participation Code Part 6.2 will apply.
- You can view further information about distributed generation and the Electricity Industry Participation Code, Part 6, Connection of Distributed Generation on the Electricity Authority’s website at www.ea.govt.nz