Thursday, June 7, 2018
Clean Energy Future Bill Set For Senate Debate
Senator’s will soon be debating and voting on a major legislative initiative in the area of energy efficiency, energy emission reductions, expansion of renewable energy sources, and a lifting of the net metering cap.
Senate Bill 2545, An Act To Promote A Clean Energy Future, is scheduled for our Thursday session. You can read the bill at this link: https://malegislature.gov/Bills/190/S2545
Here is a summary of some of the major elements of the bill:
• Changes our state’s Global Warming Solutions Act to require the Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs to adopt statewide greenhouse gas emissions limits for the years 2030 and 2040 and a plan to achieve those reductions.
• Requires the 2030 emissions limit to be between 35% and 45% below the 1990 emissions level and requires the 2040 emissions limit to be between 55% and 65% below the 1990 emissions level.
• Requires the Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs to promulgate regulations establishing market-based compliance mechanisms to maximize the ability of the Commonwealth to achieve its greenhouse gas emission limits for: (i) the transportation sector; (ii) the commercial and industrial building sectors; and (iii) the residential building sector.
• Clarifies that municipal electric departments and municipal light boards are subject to the provisions of the Global Warming Solutions Act, but allows the Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs to exempt them if it will not negatively impact the state’s ability to achieve its greenhouse gas emissions limits.
• Increases the percentage of Class I renewable energy that must be purchased by retail electric suppliers under the Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard from an additional 1% annually to an additional 3% annually.
• Requires the Department of Energy Resources to establish an energy storage system target program for the deployment of energy storage systems by distribution company customers, distribution companies and municipal lighting plants to achieve a statewide energy storage deployment target of 2,000 mega-watts by January 1, 2025.
• Directs the Department of Energy Resources to promulgate regulations to allow a distribution company or municipal light company to reach its energy storage deployment target by making an alternative compliance payment.
• Removes the net metering cap for non-governmental solar net metering facilities.
• Clarifies that a distribution company may not assess a demand charge on a Class I net metering facility unless it is a charge based on demand during a pre-determined portion of the hours of a day defined as peak hours of system demand and the distribution company informs all customers of the manner in which any such demand charges will be assessed.
• Clarifies that that a distribution company may assess such a demand charge only in instances in which metering functionality or technology is available to the customer, at a reasonable cost, to allow the customer near real time access to electricity usage data.
• Allows the Department of Energy Resources to recommend offshore wind energy generation solicitations and procurement of up to 5,000 megawatts of aggregate nameplate capacity by December 31, 2035.
• Allows the Department of Energy Resources to recommend solicitations and procurement for more than 9,450,000 megawatts-hours of clean energy generation.