Step 5: Build and connect your project

After you have received your Application Approval Notice, you are ready to build and connect your project. This involves installing your project and obtaining a Connection Authorization from the ESA within the required 180-day period set out in Step 4. Note that the ESA Connection Authorization can only be obtained once your project has been built.

As noted in Step 4, your Application Approval Notice is valid for a limited 180-day period. Your Application Approval Notice will expire and the application will be terminated if the ESA Connection Authorization is not obtained by you within 180 days of the Application Approval Notice being issued.

The type of connection configuration is your choice, although some connection configurations may be more appropriate for you. For more information on connecting your project please go to the "Types of Connections" page. You are encouraged to discuss the most suitable configuration for your project with your LDC.

Installation

Contacting the Electrical Safety Authority

Finalizing your connection with your LDC

Installation

Many people who own their own microFIT project hire an installer to help them install their project. The renewable energy sector is a growing industry, and there are many installers from which to choose. It is very important to choose a qualified installer when you are developing your renewable energy project.

The OPA does not endorse or recommend any particular installer. You remain solely responsible for any selection of, or agreements with, installers or other third parties related to the installation of your project.

A qualified installer or contractor will:

  • have experience installing grid-connected renewable energy projects in Ontario, with particular experience installing your technology of choice
  • have the proper licensing and certifications as applicable
  • have general liability insurance

The OPA has prepared a list of questions that you should ask your installer before investing in your project. For more information, please view the "Questions to Ask" pdf.

To find a qualified installer, contact the industry association for the technology of interest to you:

Canadian Solar Industry Association
Canadian Wind Energy Association
Ontario Waterpower Association
Canadian Bioenergy Association

Contacting the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA)

After your project has been built, you must apply to the ESA for an electrical inspection. Your project will not be connected to the grid until your LDC receives a Connection Authorization letter from the ESA. You will also be required to provide the OPA with a copy of the ESA Connection Authorization as evidence that the project has passed the service inspection and is ready to connect to the grid. 

This information must be uploaded through your My microFIT Home Page and submitted to the OPA before the expiry of your Application Approval Notice. This file can only be uploaded once your application has received an Application Approval Notice. Submitting this document to the OPA can be done through the "My Files" link that is enabled once your application status is updated to "Pending Connection."

In many cases, your installer will help you to arrange and prepare for the safety inspection. The inspection will address the following:

  • Is the equipment approved for usage in Ontario?
  • Does the installation have the required devices to protect against short circuits and circuit overloads?
  • Does the installation have the required disconnection features?
  • Does the installation make use of an appropriate inverter system?
  • Does all wiring comply with provincial safety requirements?
  • Do all devices display the proper safety labels?

FAQs on the Electrical Safety Authority inspection are available.

Finalizing your connection with your LDC

After your project is installed and has passed the electrical safety inspection, you will need to finalize your connection to the grid.

Your LDC must have the following information from you to finalize your connection:

  • Connection Authorization letter issued by the ESA
  • payment for the connection costs
  • signed “Micro-Embedded Generation Facility Connection Agreement”.  This is a standard agreement prescribed by all LDCs. It is an agreement between you and your LDC. Please review this agreement carefully and ensure that you understand its terms and conditions.

Once your microFIT project is connected, your LDC will notify the OPA. Notification will include project-specific information and the date the project was physically connected to the distribution system, and the status of your application will change to “Connection Completed”.
 


Step 6: Contract offer »

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