What is the principle of compensation for self-generating customers (prosumers)?
As you may know, in Brussels it is forbidden for meters to run backwards. For prosumers - customers who produce their own green electricity, e.g. via solar panels - Sibelga installs two-way meters. These electronic meters record the offtake of electricity and the injection of surplus electricity into the grid separately.
Until now, for customers with a generating installation of up to 5kW (maximum power at the inverter output), the energy bill was drawn up by deducting the amount of electricity fed into the grid from the amount of energy withdrawn.
Electricity drawn - electricity generated fed back = electricity billed (kWh)
This is known as the compensation principle. Your excess production fed into the grid is "virtually" deducted from what you take from the grid.
If the result of the calculation is negative, it is reduced to 0.
The end of the compensation principle
- For the "distribution costs" part of your bill, compensation has already been abolished in January 2020.
- For the "energy" part of your bill, the compensation will also be abolished from November 2021.
Why is this?
The aim of abolishing the compensation is to ensure that all consumers, with or without solar panels, contribute fairly to the costs of the network.
A supplementary meter reading
In order to put an end to the principle of compensation, a one-off meter reading will take place from mid-September 2021, even if the annual meter reading has just been carried out in your municipality.
If you are absent, a document will be left on site inviting you to communicate your meter readings to us yourself. Without a meter reading, the offtake and injection indexes will be estimated.
We are therefore counting on you to give our meter readers access.
What are the impacts on your bill?
- You will pay the energy costs on all the electricity you take from the grid, regardless of the electricity you inject.
- You will pay the network costs - transmission and distribution costs - on all the electricity you take from the grid, regardless of the electricity you inject.
- Valuation of your electricity production fed back into the grid: in accordance with the tariffs and conditions of your contract, your current supplier will buy back the electricity you feed into the grid from you (principle of forced feed-in trading)
The advance payments you make to your energy supplier will be adjusted accordingly.
Do not hesitate to contact your supplier for more information, either on the tariffs applied or on the revised amounts of the instalments.
Adapt your consumption to reduce your bill
- Use the energy you produce when you produce it (when your panels are working). (more info on self-consumption) After all, this energy is free!
For example: by programming your energy-hungry appliances to run at those times or by using a timer.
- Limit the amount of electricity you draw from the grid in the evening and at night (when your panels are not working).
For example: by opting for more energy-efficient appliances (LED lighting, low-energy appliances, etc.), by programming your appliances at a different time.
No impact on your green certificates
This change is not linked to your green meter and has no impact on your green certificates.
Valuation of your injection
1) Does your production facility have a power of 5 kW or less?
In accordance with the tariffs and conditions of your contract, your current supplier will buy back the electricity you inject into the network (principle of forced commercialisation of injection).
For more information, contact your energy supplier.
2) Does your production facility have an output of more than 5 kW?
You do not benefit from the principle of compensation between the quantities of electricity that you take from the grid and those that you inject into it.
Until now, you have had 2 EAN codes: one for offtake, one for injection.
Since November 2021, there will be no change in your electricity purchase and resale contracts with one or two commercial suppliers, but the EAN code that currently corresponds to reinjection into the grid will be removed. You will have a single EAN for several services:
- The purchase of your electricity offtake will now be called 'offtake commercialisation'.
- The resale of your surplus electricity will now be called 'injection commercialisation'.
If you do not already do so, you will have to conclude a specific contract with a utility to sell your surplus electricity.
In order to valorise your injection, if this is not yet the case, you will have to conclude a specific contract with a commercial supplier of your choice (principle of (free) commercialisation of the injection).