July 1, 2019
Actual Alternative Compliance Payment Rates Announced
The ComEd Modified Real-Time Pricing Pilot Inches Forward?
In Docket 18-1772, in their brief ICC staff recommend that the Commission support ComEd’s modified Real-Time pricing pilot.
ComEd had initially proposed to market the real-time pricing Bill Protection Guarantee (BPG) to approximately 10,000 customers on default service with an expected response rate leading to enrollment of approximately 1,500 customers.
In its modified plan ComEd accepted Staff’s recommendation to limit the number of customers that can accept the Bill Protection Guarantee (BPG) offer to the first 700 customers. Staff stated that its initial concerns regarding potential barriers to competition because retail suppliers would not have same access to customer AMI data were mitigated when ComEd agreed to reduce the pool size of the trial. In its brief, the Illinois Competitive Energy Association (ICEA) continued its objection on anti-competitive grounds.
50% National Renewable Electric Standard Bill Introduced
On June 26, 2019 U.S. Senator Tom Udall introduced legislation to achieve at least 50 percent renewable electricity nationwide in just 15 years – putting the U.S. on a trajectory to decarbonize the power sector by 2050. Starting in 2020, the Renewable Electricity Standard (RES) Act of 2019 would require electricity providers across the country to increase their supply of renewable energy from sources like wind and solar each year. The full text of the bill text can be found HERE.
Three Renewable Energy Bills Become Law
The Maine Legislature recently passed three clean energy bills, including a renewable portfolio standard that requires the state to get 80% of its electricity from renewable energy by 2030 and 100% by 2050. On May 26, Maine’s governor signed three bills aimed at ushering in renewable energy.
The new laws, effective in September, would boost solar incentives and reduce Maine greenhouse gas emissions by 45% by 2030 and 80% by 2050. Lawmakers also passed legislation to increase Maine's renewable portfolio standard from 40% today to 80% by 2030 and 100% by 2050. The bill numbers are LD 1711, LD 1494, and LD 1679
Initial Dates Set for Retail Working Groups
The Massachusetts DPU has scheduled June 26th as the initial meeting date for newly formed retail energy working groups established in Docket 19-07. See discussion topics here.
The Customer Awareness/Protection group will discuss :
- Automatic renewal
- Customer complaint data
- Marketing standards of conduct
- Supplier enrollment reports; and
- EnergySwitch MA awareness.
The second working group will discuss recommended improvements to shopping website. .
Joint Study on Distributed Energy Resources Begins
Docket 19-06-29 PURA (link is a Microsoft Word document download) and the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection(DEEP) initiated a joint proceeding to evaluate the value of distributed energy resources as required by Section 6 of Public Act 19-35. Before July 1, 2020, the group is to report its assessment to the joint standing committee of the General Assembly.
Further Extension Granted For ESCO Compliance With Revised PUC Rules
In Case 98-M-1343, the Secretary of the New York PSC issued a notice granting a further extension for ESCO compliance with revised Uniform Business Practices (UBPs) until October 3, 2019.
Utility Consolidated Billing For Community Solar Distributed Generation
The New York PSC had opened Case 19-M-0463, In the Matter of Consolidated Billing for Distributed Energy Resources, to address consolidated billing for Community Distributed Generation (CDG) and other distributed energy resources (DERs).
Court Rejects First Energy’s Distribution Modernization Rider
As first reported in Energy Choice Matters, the Supreme Court of Ohio in Slip Opinion No. 2019-OHIO-2401 . has ruled the Ohio Commission erred in approving the FirstEnergy Ohio EDCs' Distribution Modernization Rider (Rider DMR).
The court said “[t]he commission relied solely on rehearing testimony demonstrating that its staff intends for the DMR to jump-start the companies’ grid modernization efforts. But the PUCO staff’s intent does not explain how the DMR will encourage the companies to invest in distribution modernization."
PUCO Approves Settlement With Competitive Supplier for Noncompliance
In Case 19-1278-GE-UNC, the Commission of Ohio approved a stipulation between Great American Power and PUCO Staff under which Great American Power agreed to a forfeiture of $35,000 to resolve all of the issues identified by Staff in a Notice of Probable Non-Compliance dated October 25, 2018. See Settlement Order (pdf).
Pennsylvania Commission Approves PECO Prepaid Pilot
In P-2016-2573023, the Pennsylvania PUC has issued a written order approving a modified prepaid program at PECO, with the order holding that, "[t]he Competition Act does not bar an EDC from offering a service if the market cannot." Under the proposal PECO's prepaid pilot is to be limited to 2,000 residential shopping and default service customers.
In its written order, the Commission states, "[a]dditionally, we reiterate that this is a pilot, which will allow the Commission to analyze the impacts of a utility-offered pre-pay program on, among other things, the competitive market." "We believe that this proposed pilot program should be given an opportunity to proceed in order to gather data to aid in the determination of its viability in terms of convenience to customers, cost effectiveness, reduction in terminations, and increase in reconnections, particularly just before the winter moratorium takes effect, and other benefits," the PUC said
"We remind PECO that this program is not to be used as a substitute for the company-issued payment arrangements that it offers to payment troubled customers now. PECO is expected to continue to negotiate payment arrangements with payment-troubled customers in good faith. We assure all stakeholders that this approval is not intended to circumvent or reduce the consumer protections to which customers are now entitled. If at any time during the pilot, those protections are imperiled, PECO must suspend the program and may do so with a letter to the Commission at this docket," the PUC said.
PECO was directed to submit a compliance filing reflecting the modification. If the modifications are not acceptable to PECO, then PECO will simply not file its compliance filing, and the program will not be developed, the PUC said.
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