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SB-1299 California Renewables Portfolio Standard Program: renewable energy credits.(2015-2016)

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SB1299:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  March 28, 2016

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2015–2016 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 1299


Introduced by Senator Hertzberg
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Dodd and Eduardo Garcia)

February 19, 2016


An act to amend Section Sections 399.13 and 399.21 of the Public Utilities Code, relating to electricity.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 1299, as amended, Hertzberg. California Renewables Portfolio Standard Program: renewable energy credits.
The California Renewables Portfolio Standard Program requires the Public Utilities Commission to establish a rewewables renewables portfolio standard requiring all retail sellers, as defined, to procure a minimum quantity of electricity products from eligible renewable energy resources, as defined, at specified percentages of the total kilowatthours sold to their retail end-customers end-use customers during specified compliance periods. The program additionally requires each local publicly owned electric utility, as defined, to procure a minimum quantity of electricity products from eligible renewable energy resources to achieve the targets established by the program. The program, consistent with the goals of procuring the least-cost and best-fit eligible renewable energy resources that meet project viability principles, requires that all retail sellers procure a balanced portfolio of electricity products from eligible renewable energy resources, as specified, referred to as the portfolio content requirements. The program requires the commission to authorize the use of renewable energy credits to satisfy the renewables portfolio standard procurement requirements, subject to specified conditions. conditions and limitations for unbundled renewable energy credits. One condition placed on renewable energy credits is that they not be created for electricity generated under any electricity purchase contract executed after January 1, 2005, pursuant to the federal Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978, also known as PURPA.
This bill would make nonsubstantial revisions to the requirement that the commission authorize the use of renewable energy credits to satisfy the renewables portfolio standard procurement requirements. require that renewable energy credits be created for electricity generated under an electricity purchase contract executed after January 1, 2017, pursuant to PURPA, with those credits being owned by the owner of the eligible renewable energy resource unless otherwise agreed to by the owner. The bill would prohibit the commission from requiring, as a condition of entering into an electricity purchase contract pursuant to PURPA, that the generator sell its renewable energy credits to the electrical corporation pursuant to the contract. The bill would provide that when electricity products and the renewable energy credits associated with those electricity products are sold to the same electrical corporation pursuant to 2 or more separate purchase contracts with identical start and end dates, the credits and electricity products would be treated as bundled.
Under existing law, a violation of the Public Utilities Act or any order, decision, rule, direction, demand, or requirement of the commission is a crime.
Because the provisions of this bill would be a part of the act and because a violation of an order or decision of the commission implementing its requirements would be a crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program by creating a new crime.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NOYES   Local Program: NOYES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 399.13 of the Public Utilities Code is amended to read:

399.13.
 (a) (1) The commission shall direct each electrical corporation to annually prepare a renewable energy procurement plan that includes the matter in paragraph (5), to satisfy its obligations under the renewables portfolio standard. To the extent feasible, this procurement plan shall be proposed, reviewed, and adopted by the commission as part of, and pursuant to, a general procurement plan process. The commission shall require each electrical corporation to review and update its renewable energy procurement plan as it determines to be necessary. The commission shall require all other retail sellers to prepare and submit renewable energy procurement plans that address the requirements identified in paragraph (5).
(2) Every electrical corporation that owns electrical transmission facilities shall annually prepare, as part of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Order 890 process, and submit to the commission, a report identifying any electrical transmission facility, upgrade, or enhancement that is reasonably necessary to achieve the renewables portfolio standard procurement requirements of this article. Each report shall look forward at least five years and, to ensure that adequate investments are made in a timely manner, shall include a preliminary schedule when an application for a certificate of public convenience and necessity will be made, pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 1001), for any electrical transmission facility identified as being reasonably necessary to achieve the renewable energy resources procurement requirements of this article. Each electrical corporation that owns electrical transmission facilities shall ensure that project-specific interconnection studies are completed in a timely manner.
(3) The commission shall direct each retail seller to prepare and submit an annual compliance report that includes all of the following:
(A) The current status and progress made during the prior year toward procurement of eligible renewable energy resources as a percentage of retail sales, including, if applicable, the status of any necessary siting and permitting approvals from federal, state, and local agencies for those eligible renewable energy resources procured by the retail seller, and the current status of compliance with the portfolio content requirements of subdivision (c) of Section 399.16, including procurement of eligible renewable energy resources located outside the state and within the WECC and unbundled renewable energy credits.
(B) If the retail seller is an electrical corporation, the current status and progress made during the prior year toward construction of, and upgrades to, transmission and distribution facilities and other electrical system components it owns to interconnect eligible renewable energy resources and to supply the electricity generated by those resources to load, including the status of planning, siting, and permitting transmission facilities by federal, state, and local agencies.
(C) Recommendations to remove impediments to making progress toward achieving the renewable energy resources procurement requirements established pursuant to this article.
(4) The commission shall adopt, by rulemaking, all of the following:
(A) A process that provides criteria for the rank ordering and selection of least-cost and best-fit eligible renewable energy resources to comply with the California Renewables Portfolio Standard Program obligations on a total cost and best-fit basis. This process shall take into account all of the following:
(i) Estimates of indirect costs associated with needed transmission investments.
(ii) The cost impact of procuring the eligible renewable energy resources on the electrical corporation’s electricity portfolio.
(iii) The viability of the project to construct and reliably operate the eligible renewable energy resource, including the developer’s experience, the feasibility of the technology used to generate electricity, and the risk that the facility will not be built, or that construction will be delayed, with the result that electricity will not be supplied as required by the contract.
(iv) Workforce recruitment, training, and retention efforts, including the employment growth associated with the construction and operation of eligible renewable energy resources and goals for recruitment and training of women, minorities, and disabled veterans.
(v) (I) Estimates of electrical corporation expenses resulting from integrating and operating eligible renewable energy resources, including, but not limited to, any additional wholesale energy and capacity costs associated with integrating each eligible renewable resource.
(II) No later than December 31, 2015, the commission shall approve a methodology for determining the integration costs described in subclause (I).
(vi) Consideration of any statewide greenhouse gas emissions limit established pursuant to the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 (Division 25.5 (commencing with Section 38500) of the Health and Safety Code).
(vii) Consideration of capacity and system reliability of the eligible renewable energy resource to ensure grid reliability.
(B) Rules permitting retail sellers to accumulate, beginning January 1, 2011, excess procurement in one compliance period to be applied to any subsequent compliance period. The rules shall apply equally to all retail sellers. In determining the quantity of excess procurement for the applicable compliance period, the commission shall retain the rules adopted by the commission and in effect as of January 1, 2015, for the compliance period specified in subparagraphs (A) to (C), inclusive, of paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 399.15. For any subsequent compliance period, the rules shall allow the following:
(i) For electricity products meeting the portfolio content requirements of paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 399.16, contracts of any duration may count as excess procurement.
(ii) Electricity products meeting the portfolio content requirements of paragraph (2) or (3) of subdivision (b) of Section 399.16 shall not be counted as excess procurement. Contracts of any duration for electricity products meeting the portfolio content requirements of paragraph (2) or (3) of subdivision (b) of Section 399.16 that are credited towards a compliance period shall not be deducted from a retail seller’s procurement for purposes of calculating excess procurement.
(iii) If a retail seller notifies the commission that it will comply with the provisions of subdivision (b) for the compliance period beginning January 1, 2017, the provisions of clauses (i) and (ii) shall take effect for that retail seller for that compliance period.
(C) Standard terms and conditions to be used by all electrical corporations in contracting for eligible renewable energy resources, including performance requirements for renewable generators. A Except as provided in paragraph (5) of subdivision (a) of Section 399.21, a contract for the purchase of electricity generated by an eligible renewable energy resource, at a minimum, shall include the renewable energy credits associated with all electricity generation specified under the contract. The standard terms and conditions shall include the requirement that, no later than six months after the commission’s approval of an electricity purchase agreement entered into pursuant to this article, the following information about the agreement shall be disclosed by the commission: party names, resource type, project location, and project capacity.
(D) An appropriate minimum margin of procurement above the minimum procurement level necessary to comply with the renewables portfolio standard to mitigate the risk that renewable projects planned or under contract are delayed or canceled. This paragraph does not preclude an electrical corporation from voluntarily proposing a margin of procurement above the appropriate minimum margin established by the commission.
(5) Consistent with the goal of increasing California’s reliance on eligible renewable energy resources, the renewable energy procurement plan shall include all of the following:
(A) An assessment of annual or multiyear portfolio supplies and demand to determine the optimal mix of eligible renewable energy resources with deliverability characteristics that may include peaking, dispatchable, baseload, firm, and as-available capacity.
(B) Potential compliance delays related to the conditions described in paragraph (5) of subdivision (b) of Section 399.15.
(C) A bid solicitation setting forth the need for eligible renewable energy resources of each deliverability characteristic, required online dates, and locational preferences, if any.
(D) A status update on the development schedule of all eligible renewable energy resources currently under contract.
(E) Consideration of mechanisms for price adjustments associated with the costs of key components for eligible renewable energy resource projects with online dates more than 24 months after the date of contract execution.
(F) An assessment of the risk that an eligible renewable energy resource will not be built, or that construction will be delayed, with the result that electricity will not be delivered as required by the contract.
(6) In soliciting and procuring eligible renewable energy resources, each electrical corporation shall offer contracts of no less than 10 years duration, unless the commission approves of a contract of shorter duration.
(7) In soliciting and procuring eligible renewable energy resources for California-based projects, each electrical corporation shall give preference to renewable energy projects that provide environmental and economic benefits to communities afflicted with poverty or high unemployment, or that suffer from high emission levels of toxic air contaminants, criteria air pollutants, and greenhouse gases.
(8) In soliciting and procuring eligible renewable energy resources, each retail seller shall consider the best-fit attributes of resource types that ensure a balanced resource mix to maintain the reliability of the electrical grid.
(b) A retail seller may enter into a combination of long- and short-term contracts for electricity and associated renewable energy credits. Beginning January 1, 2021, at least 65 percent of the procurement a retail seller counts toward the renewables portfolio standard requirement of each compliance period shall be from its contracts of 10 years or more in duration or in its ownership or ownership agreements for eligible renewable energy resources.
(c) The commission shall review and accept, modify, or reject each electrical corporation’s renewable energy resource procurement plan prior to the commencement of renewable energy procurement pursuant to this article by an electrical corporation. The commission shall assess adherence to the approved renewable energy resource procurement plans in determining compliance with the obligations of this article.
(d) Unless previously preapproved by the commission, an electrical corporation shall submit a contract for the generation of an eligible renewable energy resource to the commission for review and approval consistent with an approved renewable energy resource procurement plan. If the commission determines that the bid prices are elevated due to a lack of effective competition among the bidders, the commission shall direct the electrical corporation to renegotiate the contracts or conduct a new solicitation.
(e) If an electrical corporation fails to comply with a commission order adopting a renewable energy resource procurement plan, the commission shall exercise its authority to require compliance.
(f) (1) The commission may authorize a procurement entity to enter into contracts on behalf of customers of a retail seller for electricity products from eligible renewable energy resources to satisfy the retail seller’s renewables portfolio standard procurement requirements. The commission shall not require any person or corporation to act as a procurement entity or require any party to purchase eligible renewable energy resources from a procurement entity.
(2) Subject to review and approval by the commission, the procurement entity shall be permitted to recover reasonable administrative and procurement costs through the retail rates of end-use customers that are served by the procurement entity and are directly benefiting from the procurement of eligible renewable energy resources.
(g) Procurement and administrative costs associated with contracts entered into by an electrical corporation for eligible renewable energy resources pursuant to this article and approved by the commission are reasonable and prudent and shall be recoverable in rates.
(h) Construction, alteration, demolition, installation, and repair work on an eligible renewable energy resource that receives production incentives pursuant to Section 25742 of the Public Resources Code, including work performed to qualify, receive, or maintain production incentives, are “public works” for the purposes of Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 1720) of Part 7 of Division 2 of the Labor Code.

SECTION 1.SEC. 2.

 Section 399.21 of the Public Utilities Code is amended to read:

399.21.
 (a) The commission, by rule, shall authorize the use of renewable energy credits to satisfy the renewables portfolio standard procurement requirements established pursuant to this article, subject to the following conditions:
(1) The commission and the Energy Commission shall ensure that the tracking system established pursuant to subdivision (c) of Section 399.25, is operational, is capable of independently verifying that electricity earning the credit is generated by an eligible renewable energy resource, and can ensure that renewable energy credits shall not be double counted by any seller of electricity within the service territory of the WECC.
(2) Each renewable energy credit shall be counted only once for compliance with the renewables portfolio standard of this state or any other state, or for verifying retail product claims in this state or any other state.
(3) All revenues received by an electrical corporation for the sale of a renewable energy credit shall be credited to the benefit of ratepayers.
(4) Renewable energy credits shall not be created for electricity generated pursuant to any electricity purchase contract with a retail seller or a local publicly owned electric utility executed before January 1, 2005, unless the contract contains explicit terms and conditions specifying the ownership or disposition of those credits. Procurement under those contracts shall be tracked through the accounting system described in subdivision (b) of Section 399.25 and included in the quantity of eligible renewable energy resources of the purchasing retail seller pursuant to Section 399.15.

(5)Renewable energy credits shall not be created for electricity generated under any electricity purchase contract executed after January 1, 2005, pursuant to the federal Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 (16 U.S.C. Sec. 2601 et seq.). Procurement under the electricity purchase contracts shall be tracked through the accounting system implemented by the Energy Commission pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 399.25 and count toward the renewables portfolio standard procurement requirements of the purchasing retail seller.

(5) Renewable energy credits shall be created for electricity generated by an eligible renewable energy resource pursuant to an electricity purchase contract executed on or after January 1, 2017, pursuant to the federal Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 (16 U.S.C. Sec. 2601 et seq.), also known as PURPA. The renewable energy credit shall be owned by the owner of the eligible renewable energy resource unless otherwise agreed to by the owner. The commission shall not require, as a condition of entering into an electricity purchase contract pursuant to PURPA, that the generator sell its renewable energy credits to the electrical corporation pursuant to the contract. Electricity products and the renewable energy credits associated with those electricity products that are sold to the same electrical corporation pursuant to two or more separate purchase contracts that contain identical start and end dates shall be classified as meeting the portfolio content category of paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 399.16.
(6) Nothing in the amendments to this article made by the Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act of 2015 (Chapter 547 of the Statutes of 2015) is intended to change commission Decision 11-12-052 (December 15, 2011), Decision Implementing Portfolio Content Categories For The Renewables Portfolio Standard Program, regarding the classification of renewable energy credits from generation on the customer side of the meter.
(7) A renewable energy credit shall not be eligible for compliance with a renewables portfolio standard procurement requirement unless it is retired in the tracking system established pursuant to subdivision (c) of Section 399.25 by the retail seller or local publicly owned electric utility within 36 months from the initial date of generation of the associated electricity.
(b) The commission shall allow an electrical corporation to recover the reasonable costs of purchasing, selling, and administering renewable energy credit contracts in rates.

SEC. 3.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.