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Create Green in Michigan

How to Apply

Before you install your solar panels or other distributed energy resources, and before you connect to our grid, you'll need to submit a New Interconnection Service Request via PowerClerk.

Once approved, you can install the system, then you'll submit a signed agreement with us that governs the arrangement, and following a successful inspection of your equipment we will install a bi-directional meter.

Check out our Frequently Asked Questions below for more information on our CreateGreen program.


Requirements For Michigan Customers

To be eligible for I&M’s Distributed Generation Rider (DG Rider), customers must generate a portion or all of their own retail electricity with an eligible Electric Generator which utilizes a Renewable Energy Resource.

I&M’s Distributed Generation program for Category 1 customers (20 kW or less) has reached the program size limits as set forth in MCL 460.1173(3) and in the I&M DG Rider availability terms. Customers with completed Distributed Generation applications pending as of May 15, 2023 will be permitted to participate in the I&M DG Rider. However, I&M will no longer be accepting new Category 1 customers seeking to interconnect an electric generator (solar or wind facility) into the Distributed Generation program as of May 15, 2023. Any customer who wishes to submit an interconnection application after May 15th that is 20 kW or less may apply for service under the I&M Cogeneration and/or Small Power Production Service tariff (Tariff COGEN).

System Sizing

The eligible Electric Generator systems and nameplate capacity limits are defined in the Distributed Generation Rider for each type of system. The system must be located on the customer's premises, serve only the customer's premises and must be intended primarily to offset a portion or all of the customer's requirement for electricity. The nameplate capacity to generate electricity will be compared to the customer’s annual consumption of electricity in kWh on the premises on a per meter basis. Eligible customers without adequate electricity use data can submit a projected load sheet. I&M will then review the data to ensure the facility sizing is intended primarily to offset a portion or all of the customer's own electrical load requirements on a per meter basis, consistent with the nameplate capacity limits for each type of eligible Electric Generator system.

Create Green Frequently Asked Questions

Expand the questions below to find answers to common questions on I&M's Application Approval Process.

I&M’s two net metering service riders - for customers with generating facilities of 20 kW or less (Rider NMS-1) or greater than 20 kW (Rider NMS-2) – are only available to eligible customers participating prior to February 1, 2020 as defined in the referenced riders.

All customers now on Rider NMS-1 and NMS-2 net metering will be grandfathered for 10 years from the date of their meter change following issuance of their permit to install under an approved CreateGreen and Distributed Generation Program Application.

Any changes to existing net metering customer’s systems may lead to a loss of net metering eligibility under these riders. Further, customers eligible under Riders NMS-1 and NMS-2 have the option to take service under I&M’s current DG Rider as their 10 years of eligibility nears an end.

Customers participating after the previous net metering service rider deadlines are subject to the requirements of I&M’s DG Rider or Tariff COGEN.

Only level 4 and 5 interconnection applications are required to submit a New Pre-Application Request.

The installer, customer and I&M should complete Steps 1-4 as summarized below:

Step 1: The installer or customer register for access to PowerClerk. The installer or customer then submits the New Interconnection Service Request via PowerClerk.

Step 2: The customer then signs the Application via DocuSign and pays the required application fee.

Step 3: I&M verifies all the information in the application and confirms the proposed distributed generation facility is designed to meet program requirements.

Step 4: The customer receives confirmation that a complete Application has been received by I&M.

For the timely issuance of the confirmation that a complete Application has been submitted, please make sure you and your installer reply to any requests for clarification during Steps 2 and 3.

Customers and their installers who submit an Application via AEP’s PowerClerk online application platform should focus on several key steps to ensure their Application can be confirmed as complete by I&M in a timely manner.

The key mistakes that often create the most errors and delays in application processing include:

  • The customer’s account number is NOT entered exactly as instructed in PowerClerk
  • The customer’s name and address on the account is NOT entered into PowerClerk exactly as it is shown on the customer’s monthly invoice
  • The customer’s meter number is NOT entered exactly as instructed in PowerClerk
  • Records Fix requests provided by the I&M team via e-mail from PowerClerk or the DG Coordinator are NOT responded to and addressed in a timely manner

Please note, if you have a question about a required entry in the PowerClerk online application form, just click on the Question Mark (?) near the entry for guidance.

Once a customer receives confirmation from I&M that a completed Application has been submitted in Step 4 of the process indicated above, the customer will be issued an Approval to build the eligible distributed generation facility when I&M completes Steps 5-7 as summarized below:

Step 5: : I&M conducts a review of project’s impact to the distribution system. Note that< 5% of projects typically require a reliability study/system review by I&M.

Step 6: I&M conducts the review (or reliability impact study, if needed) and prepares a construction agreement for the installation of new I&M equipment, if necessary. I&M will install the new equipment after the customer signs the Construction Agreement and customer payment is received.

Step 7: The customer receives the Approval notification and the eligible distributed generation facility can now be constructed by the installer as proposed.

For the timely issuance of the Approval, please make sure you and your installer reply to any requests for clarification, signature and or payment, as needed, during Steps 5-7.

Once a customer receives the Approval confirmation from I&M in Step 7 above, the customer will then be able to install their eligible distributed generation facility. Steps 8-12 need to be completed as summarized below before permission to operate will be given:

Step 8: The customer signs the Interconnection Agreement via DocuSign

Step 9: The installer constructs the eligible distributed generation facility and uploads all required proof of installation and local building inspection documents to I&M via PowerClerk.

Step 10: I&M verifies that the eligible distributed generation facility was installed as proposed and creates order to install the bi-directional meter.

Step 11: I&M installs the bi-directional meter. Normal time frame for meter changes is 7-10 business days.

Step 12: I&M issues Permission to Operate and updates the customer’s account to ensure applicable credits for power delivered to I&M are applied.

The customer is not permitted to operate the eligible distributed generation facility until Permission to Operate has been issued by I&M in Step 12.

Your installer can grant you access to PowerClerk after you register for PowerClerk by granting you Read Only or Read/Write under the Access Grants for this Project. The installer will need a valid email address for you.

All of us have experienced at times frustration when e-mail client spam and junk filters block important e-mails we need. This can happen at times with e-mails from Power Clerk and I&M’s shared mailboxes used to manage application communications.

I&M recommends that you check your spam and junk folders often after your application is submitted to avoid missing communications from us. Common email addresses issued by PowerClerk and I&M include:

An initial Application must be submitted via PowerClerk at https://aep.powerclerk.com and must include uploads of the following information:

  • A site diagram,
  • A one-line diagram showing the configuration of the proposed distributed generation facility.
    • Projects greater than 20 kW must have the one-line sealed by a licensed Professional Engineer or signed by a licensed electrical contractor with license number noted
    • Projects greater than 550 kW must have the one-line sealed by a licensed Professional Engineer
  • A series of site pictures that demonstrate the location of panel installation, the current electrical meter, and the area surrounding the current electrical meter up to 2 feet in all directions,
  • Specification sheets for all equipment proposed to be installed

Once your eligible distributed generation facility is approved for installation and constructed per Steps 7 and 8 above, you will need to upload the following documents to Power Clerk:

  • A copy of the local building inspection report
  • A letter from the licensed electrician attesting that the generation equipment has been installed in accordance with applicable local and National Electric Code requirements (if no local permit inspection authority exists)
  • Digital pictures of
    • The installed generation equipment,
    • The AC disconnect,
    • The inverter nameplate,
    • The utility meter, and
    • All required placards under National Electric Code requirements.

In order to obtain permission to install and ultimately operate an Eligible Electric Generator system for a Renewable Energy Resource under I&M’s DG Rider, a customer shall submit a completed Application. This application requires payment of a $50 application fee.

The Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 (PURPA) established a new class of generating facilities known as qualifying facilities (QFs). QFs fall into two categories: qualifying small power production facilities and qualifying cogeneration facilities.

To apply for a QF:

  1. Submit application in PowerClerk

    Please note: prior to submitting your application, the QF may request a New Pre-Application Request/Screen report in PowerClerk that will provide our available distribution load for interconnection requests at the provided location. Applicable fee will be invoiced.

  2. Submit a self-certification or apply for and obtain a Commission certification of QF status, Form No. 556 available at https://www.ferc.gov/qf
  3. Address the requirements of I&M’s Cogeneration and/or Small Power Production Service Tariff (TARIFF COGEN/SPP) found in I&M’s Michigan tariff book, SHEET NO. D-68.00: https://www.indianamichiganpower.com/company/about/rates/mi
  4. Establish a legally enforceable obligation (LEO) with I&M as outlined:
    • Provide documentation confirming it has obtained the requisite QF status from FERC. QF’s that “self-certify” must provide I&M with their submitted FERC Form No. 556 - Certification of QF Status for Small Power Production and Cogeneration Facilities, or an attestation that the QF meets the requirements for QF status if its net power production is less than 1 MW and is exempt from FERC Form No. 556.
    • Provide a description of the location of the project and its proximity to other projects within one mile and within 10 miles which are owned or controlled by the same developer.
    • Provide a non-binding, good faith estimate of the energy production for the project that includes the kilowatt-hours or megawatt hours to be produced by the QF for each month and year of the entire term of the project’s anticipated avoided cost power purchase agreement.
    • Provide documentation of an interconnection application with I&M and proof of payment of the related fees.
    • Provide documentation of meaningful steps to obtain site control adequate to commence construction of the project at the proposed location.
    • Provide documentation of all applications, including filing fees, to obtain all necessary permits, including federal, state, and local permitting and zoning approvals.

      In lieu of documentation of applications to obtain all necessary permits, the QF may provide proof of firm site control in the form of an executed lease option or the equivalent and a timeline of when the QF will be applying to obtain all necessary permits.

    • If qualifying as a “cogeneration facility” written proof must be provided to the electric utility of a steam host that is willing to contract for steam over the full term of the project’s anticipated PPA for a cogeneration facility.
    • Provide proof of a deposit, paid in full, as listed below to cover the estimated costs for a system impact or facilities study, such as an engineering review or distribution study, should a study or studies become necessary.

      The deposit will include a non-refundable component to cover I&M’s initial costs of processing the customer request, including the administrative costs associated with determining the formation of a LEO.

      The QF is responsible for the actual costs for any and all system impact or facilities studies, such as an engineering review or distribution study, up to the fee caps established in the Commission Electric Interconnection and Net Metering Standards, or successor fee caps under the subsequently promulgated Interconnection and Distributed Generation Standards,


      • ≤ 150 kW: $150 deposit to cover the Non-Refundable LEO administrative amount
      • 150 kW - 550kW: $500 deposit, of which $150 is a Non-Refundable LEO administrative amount
      • 550kW - 1 MW: $1,500 deposit, of which $300 is a Non-refundable LEO administrative amount
      • 1 MW- 2 MW: $5,000 deposit, of which $500 is a Non-refundable LEO administrative amount
      • 2 MW - 5 MW: $10,000 deposit, of which $500 is a Non-refundable LEO administrative amount.

Additional Information About Interconnecting Your Generating Equipment System

For more specific information, contact our Distributed Generation Coordinator:

Rebeca Garza & Abby Kitchen
Distributed Generation Team

Phone: 260.408.3402
Email: DGCoordinator_IM@aep.com

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