What is Microgeneration?

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Infograph windfarm

Microgeneration refers to small-scale generation of electricity by households or small businesses to meet their own needs, in addition to their existing electricity supply. This is known as “self-consumption”. The most common form of microgeneration and one you may be familiar with is solar panels, however there are different types of microgeneration technologies available.


Microgeneration - Export and Earn 

Customers of Bord Gais Energy are now entitled to a payment for any electricity exported to the grid.  

Bord Gáis Energy are offering our customers, both business and homeowners, 18.5 cent per kWh for any excess electricity that they are microgenerating and exporting to the grid under our Microgen Export plan. This rate will be offered to both metered and eligible deemed* customers. 

Payments

  • To receive a payment, you’ll need to agree to our Microgen Export Plan T&Cs
  • If you were a Bord Gáis Energy customer on the 15 February (date of legislation) and microgenerating at that time, your payment will be back-dated
  • If you joined us after the 15 February, payments will be back-dated to the date you joined us and/or had microgeneration installed
  • If you’re eligible for a smart meter, you’ll need to have one installed to qualify for a payment

* Deemed customers are customers who are not eligible under the National Smart metering program to have a smart meter installed.  In this case your export amount will be calculated (deemed) using a pre-determined formula.

We will publish details with regard to how to register for the tariff in the next month.

Bord Gáis Energy are supporting our customers take-up of microgeneration technologies and move towards net zero.  

Who is eligible for the scheme?

  • To qualify for an export payment with Bord Gais Energy, you must have your electricity supply with Bord Gais Energy. Please go to our plans page to see our available offers.
  • You must have a microgenerator installed (i.e. solar PV, micro wind, micro-hydro or renewable micro-CHP)
  • You must have notified ESBN of your microgeneration connection to the grid (via an NC6 form or equivalent). If you are not sure whether your installer has completed this form, contact ESBN networks to confirm. 
  • If you are eligible to have a smart meter installed during this phase, then you will need a smart meter to be paid for your export. Where customers are eligible to have a smart meter installed, ESB Networks will endeavour to install a smart meter within four months of a valid NC6 form being processed by ESB Networks. 
  • If you are not eligible to have a smart meter installed during this phase of the rollout, then you will be paid based on a deemed export calculation.

Types of Microgeneration technologies

Microgeneration involves installing a small generator powered by a renewable source such as wind, solar or hydropower, and connecting this to the electricity network.

What is Solar PV?

Solar PV systems generate electricity during daylight hours only, predominately around the middle of the day. In Ireland, around 75% is produced from May to September. If this electricity is not used in the home it is exported to the grid. 

A solar electric system (PV) is typically made up of:

  • Solar panels on the roof, which generate DC (direct current – like in a battery).
  • An ‘Inverter’ which converts this to AC (alternating current – like the electricity in your house socket).
  • Sometimes a battery on larger systems to save energy for later use.

What is Micro-wind?

Micro-wind generation is a method of microgeneration that uses the flow of wind energy to produce electricity for a house or farm. The wind turbines are much smaller in scale than those used in conventional wind generation, so they are suitable for residential or small businesses. 

What is Micro-hydro?

Micro-hydro generation requires a flow of water to generate electricity. The flow of water is used to drive a turbine or pump which converts the flow to energy.  An alternator is then used to transform this energy into electricity. 

What is Micro-CHP Combined Heat and Power?

Micro combined Heat and Power is an efficient solution that captures the heat created through electricity generation, producing on-site heat and power at the same time.  CHP systems are normally sized to meet heat demands, and used in sectors with a high heat demand, such as hotels or swimming pools.

Woman and child by solar panels

Benefits of microgeneration

Solar Savings
  • On average, a solar PV system can save between €200-300 per year on your domestic electric bill.*
  • If you sign up to an export tariff with Bord Gáis Energy, you can earn money by selling excess electricity you are not using to the grid. Bord Gáis Energy will pay you an export rate per kWh exported. See our FAQ on microgeneration for more details of the microgeneration payments and to see what you are eligible for.

*Source: SEAI

Contribute to carbon-reduction targets
    • Microgeneration using renewable technologies reduces reliance on carbon energy sources and helps move towards a more sustainable future
Mother reading story to children on couch

Thinking of investing in microgeneration? 

  • Get an assessment of the suitability of your property
  • Apply for a grant from Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI)
  • Install solar PV or other microgeneration technology
  • Notify ESBN via an NC6 form (or equivalent)
  • Secure an export tariff with Bord Gáis Energy

Partnerships and more information

Energlaze

Bord Gáis Energy’s focus is on helping home and business owners to make better energy use choices, helping the environment while supporting the low carbon ambition of the Programme for Government. With that in mind, Bord Gáis Energy is partnering with Energlaze Home Energy Upgrades, a market-leading company in the development and installation of energy efficient and renewable products

Learn more
Sustainability

At Bord Gáis Energy we’re imagining a better way by helping our customers make better energy choices to protect our planet and those we care about. Find out more about how Bord Gáis Energy is supporting Sustainability initiatives

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Smart meters

Interested in finding out about smart meters? See our information page for more details on how they work and the different tariffs available.

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