On Thursday, April 19th, the Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission (PUC) issued its Final Implementation Order of Act 40 of 2017. The Order amends the qualifications to certify Tier I solar photovoltaic facilities under Pennsylvania’s Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards (AEPS) Act. As summarized in our previous blog post, ambiguous language in Section 2804(2)(i) and Section 2804(2)(ii) of Act 40 made it unclear whether certified but out-of-state facilities would retain their certifications under the AEPS. The Order clarified the PUC’s interpretations of Section 2804(2)(i) and Section 2804(2)(ii) which are as follows:
- Section 2804(2)(i) – “[a] certification originating within the geographical boundaries of this Commonwealth…” shall mean a facility located within PA having received an AEPS Tier I solar photovoltaic certification.
- Section 2804(2)(ii) – shall only permit out-of-state facilities that are 1) already certified as AEPS Tier I Solar Photovoltaic and 2) entered into an SREC contract with a PA electric distribution company (EDC) or electric generation supplier (EGS) serving PA customers to maintain certification until the expiration of the contract.
Solar facilities that meet the two Section 2804(2)(ii) criteria listed above are limited to maintaining certification only for the applicable amount of Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs) contractually committed to an EDC or EGS. EDCs and EGSs seeking to qualify SRECs under this interpretation must file a Petition with 60 days of the entry date of the Order.
In addition, the Order clarified that SRECs generated by certified but out-of-state facilities prior to October 30, 2017 will retain their Tier I solar qualification for their standard banking lifetime (current reporting year and following two). The Order did not clarify whether SRECs generated by such facilities after October 30, 2017 will also be able to retain their Tier I solar qualification.
At this time, it is unclear how implementation of these interpretations will be administered. SRECTrade will continue to monitor the proceedings and provide updates as they become available.