State & Stakeholder Newsletter, 11/17/10

Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Volume #9, Issue #23
Editor: Jane Pulaski

The IREC State & Stakeholder Newsletter is a foremost resource for current information on green workforce training, credentialing programs, state activities and best practices on renewable energy and energy efficiency. This free newsletter is distributed semi-monthly to email subscribers and published on IREC’s website.  If you have comments or if you would like to submit a news item, email Jane Pulaski.  To subscribe to this newsletter, click here and follow the instructions.

If you want the best news about what’s going on in the states and cities, read the State & Stakeholder Newsletter (November 17, 2010).

From the editor…

IREC’s newest model rules on Community Renewables just released–a ‘best practices’ for community solar and small wind projects

They’re finally out.

These Model Program Rules, the product of more than a year of work, are based on best practices and presented to facilitate co-investment in local renewable power facilities.

Working closely with The Vote Solar Initiative, author Joseph Wiedman (Keyes & Fox), asserts that the goal was to offer states model rules that could be tailored to their individual conditions and policies without having to reinvent the wheel.

Considering various policies available in designing a community renewables program, Wiedman said there were two key principles that greatly influenced the development of these Model Program Rules:

  1. Participants in community renewables programs should have an experience that is as similar as possible to customers who invest in on-site renewable energy; and
  2. Community renewables programs should not undermine successful on-site renewable energy programs. Rather, they should expand options for participation.

Back in April, IREC released proposed rules, which generated significant feedback from utilities, industry participants and other stakeholders.  IREC also engaged in detailed discussions with stakeholders and reviewed current community renewables efforts at the municipal and state levels in Massachusetts, Colorado, California, Washington and Utah.

Here are a few highlights from the 2010 Model Program Rules for Community Renewables:

  • Using virtual net metering (VNM) to allocate benefits of participation onto a customer’s monthly electric bill;
  • Allowing kWhs generated by a community renewables project be given a monetary value that can be applied to a participant’s bill;
  • Valuing kWh credits received by customers who are on the same distribution circuit as the community renewables project at the participant’s full retail rate;
  • Requiring utilities to include system purchase costs, operations and maintenance, necessary investment returns and other costs related to a utility-owned system in their offerings to potential participants; and
  • Allowing utilities to administer a community renewables program.

The Model Rules also include definitions, general provisions and net metering provisions.


P.S.  From everyone here at IREC, may you have the most delicious Thanksgiving.  We’ll be back on Wednesday, December 2nd.

Read the State & Stakeholder Newsletter, November 17, 2010


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