On Thursday, May 3rd, the Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission (PUC) entered its Final Implementation Order of Act 40 of 2017, clarifying some questions that remained from its adoption of the Final Implementation Order. Notably, the entry confirmed that PA-certified but out-of-state facilities would not be grandfathered with solar renewable energy credit (SREC) eligibility (i.e. Tier I solar), since the PUC found that grandfathering these facilities would result in minimal improvement for state SREC prices and fail to effectuate the intentions of the PA General Assembly.
The entry also clarified that PA SRECs associated with energy generated after October 30, 2017 would be re-certified to non-solar RECs (i.e. Tier I non-solar). The PA REC Program Administrator and PJM GATS have already worked together to modify the Tier I certification numbers attributed to all out-of-state facilities and SRECs that no longer qualify for Tier I solar eligibility. This means that SRECs with a Month of Generation of November 2017 and later have now been re-certified as Tier I non-solar RECs.
Some facilities that were re-certified with Tier I non-solar eligibility will be permitted to temporarily maintain SREC certification if under an SREC contract with an electric distribution company (EDC) or electric generation supplier (EGS) serving PA customers. EDCs and EGSs seeking to qualify contracted RECs as Tier I solar-eligible under the Final Implementation Order’s ruling must file a petition within 60 days of the entry date of the Order (May 3rd). Please note that such facilities will only be permitted to maintain certification until the expiration of the SREC contract.
Moving forward, it appears that the PA REC Program Administrator will be responsible for working with PJM GATS to re-certify SREC-contracted facilities for Tier I non-solar REC generation once their contract term expires.
Additionally, the entry clarified that:
- Solar facilities interconnected in PJM service territory are permitted to continue generating RECs eligible to be used toward Tier I non-solar requirements in the AEPS.
- Out-of-state grid-supply solar facilities must be serving end-use electricity load in PA to continue to generate energy and SRECs eligible for compliance under the Tier I solar requirement. Specifically, solar facilities must meet one of the following criteria:
- Physical connection to a PA EDC customer’s internal electrical system
- Physical interconnection to an EDC’s distribution system
- Physical connection to a PA electric cooperative’s or municipal electric system’s distribution network
- Physical connection to any PA-located transmission system, including utility-scale solar facilities that are within a PA EDC’s service territory and operating under PJM wholesale generator rules
- SRECs generated by out-of-state facilities prior to October 30, 2017 will maintain their Tier I solar certification