Posts Tagged ‘Illinois’

IL Adjustable Block Program Application Training Webinar

Posted December 5th, 2018 by SRECTrade.

SRECTrade, Inc. will be hosting a webinar to review the SRECTrade application and onboarding process for the upcoming Illinois Adjustable Block Program (ABP) on Thursday, December 13th, at 10:00am CST.

To register for the webinar, please click HERE.

SRECTrade is also targeting December 13th as the opening of its ABP application window.

Please note that a webinar recording will be made available on the SRECTrade Blog after the webinar.

IL Adjustable Block Program Parameters – Webinar

Posted November 20th, 2018 by SRECTrade.

November 21, 2018 Edit: SRECTrade may require additional REC collateral beyond the standard 5.0% required in the Final Plan. This requirement is subject to being finalized pending review of the Approved Vendor-utility contracts. More information to be announced. Please see the final, updated presentation slides for additional information through the link below.

Earlier today, SRECTrade hosted a webinar covering the upcoming Illinois Adjustable Block Program (ABP). The presentation included requirements for applying facilities, Illinois Power Agency and SRECTrade fees, and an overview of many ABP facets.

SRECTrade will be announcing the opening of its application window at a later date. SRECTrade will also be hosting 1-2 additional webinars over the coming weeks to review consumer protection requirements and the SRECTrade onboarding process (webinar dates to be announced).

For access to the presentation slides, please click HERE. To view a video recording of the webinar, please click the image below.

IL Adjustable Block Program Parameters Webinar

Posted November 9th, 2018 by SRECTrade.

November 16th Edit: This webinar has been rescheduled for Tuesday, November 20th, at 3:00pm CST. Originally, the webinar was scheduled for November 20th at 1:00pm CST. Please note that a webinar recording will be made available on the SRECTrade Blog after the webinar.

SRECTrade, Inc. will be hosting a webinar to review the parameters for the upcoming Illinois Adjustable Block Program (ABP) on Tuesday, November 20th, at 3:00pm CST.

To register for the webinar, please click HERE.

SRECTrade is targeting to open its ABP application window in early December 2018.

For more information on the ABP, please visit our blog post on the topic here.

Illinois Adjustable Block Program Update

Posted October 22nd, 2018 by SRECTrade.

SRECTrade has been closely monitoring the development of the Illinois Adjustable Block Program (ABP) since the release of the draft Long-Term Renewable Resources Procurement Plan (LTRRPP). SRECTrade will be applying for the Approved Vendor role in the ABP on November 1st.

Below is a summary presentation of many high-level ABP parameters. Please note that many of the parameters described within are still subject to change and are in the process of being finalized.

Adjustable Block Program Overview – October 18, 2018

Please also see the table below for the final ABP REC prices that were released in the June 4, 2018 Appendix D ‐ REC Pricing Model Description.


SRECTrade will provide updates on additional ABP developments as the ABP parameters and on-boarding processes are finalized.

Illinois Commerce Commission Issues Long-Term Renewable Resources Procurement Plan (LTRRPP) Draft Order

Posted March 12th, 2018 by SRECTrade.

On February 26th, the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) issued its Proposed Order of the Illinois Power Agency’s (IPA) Long-Term Renewable Resources Procurement Plan (LTRRPP). A range of issues were raised by stakeholders and commented on by the ICC in the draft order.

The ICC has also made a variety of significant changes to the Draft Plan as it was filed on December 4, 2017. One of the most substantial changes is as follows:

  • Exclusion of IL municipal, rural cooperative, and Mt. Carmel service territories from participation in the Draft Plan. Reasoning behind this includes the fact that these utility groups were not specified in enabling legislation, not included in past Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS), and did not contribute to renewable energy funds. Details of the comments from the intervenors and the ICC can be found in Section X on Page 163 of the proposed order.

A summary of other changes can be found below and as outlined in this article from PV Magazine.

  • Ruling on the IL Solar For All program that a minimum floor of 50% of energy savings must be passed on to low and moderate income households by approved vendors.
  • Adjustments to adjacent state requirements’ five public interest category scoring weights, potentially impacting the eligibility of in-state and out-of-state solar facilities.
  • Adjustments in designating brownfields for the funds allocation for solar development in this sector.
  • Reduction of requirements for producing permits in project approval process.
  • Allowances for direct current installations in net-metering and system sizes.
  • Adjustments to true-up payment process for community solar.

There is reportedly one more round of responses by intervenors and the ICC during March before the Final Plan is released on April 3rd. The changes listed above will not be finalized until the Final Plan is released.

For more information on the original Draft Plan or the revised Draft Plan that was filed with the ICC, please view our previous blog posts on those topics in the links provided.

IPA Files LTRRPP for ICC Approval

Posted December 19th, 2017 by SRECTrade.

On December 4th, the Illinois Power Agency (IPA) filed its Long-Term Renewable Resources Procurement Plan (LTRRPP or the Plan) for approval by the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC). The Plan is part of the implementation of Public Act 99-0906 (the “Future Energy Jobs Act”), which took effect on June 1, 2017.

The initial ICC Filing, including the Filing Petition, Filed Plan and appendices, and the redline comparison of the draft Plan and the Filed Plan are available on the IPA’s website here.

In response to comments received on the draft Plan, the IPA made several changes to the Filed Plan, including changes to the following:

  1. REC Pricing Model – changes to the input data and structural assumptions in the CREST-based model used to create prices for the Adjustable Block Program (ABP)
  2. Collateral Requirements – reducing the required collateral percentage from 10% of contract value to 5% for the ABP
  3. Consumer Protection – includes adjustments to Approved Vendor requirements and the removal of duplicative or unnecessary requirements
  4. 10 – 25 kW System Size Adder – the addition of a new size category of 10 kW – 25 kW
  5. Initial Block Subscription Cap – reducing the minimum opening window for Block 1 from 60 days to 45 days; imposing a 200% capacity threshold; and proposing a lottery system for applications received after the budget is exceeded
  6. “Green Marketing” Challenges – adopting a proposal presented by several commenters to develop a “brand” for participation in the ABP and to develop content around that brand, explaining the value of participation
  7. Calculation of Load for MidAmerican – slight increase in MidAmerican’s RPS goals and budgets
  8. Single Approved Vendor Model – imposing a 100 kW minimum project size Single Approved Vendor category
  9. Allocation of Alternative Compliance Payment (“ACPs”) – proposing that the balance of payments made during the transition period be held in reserve for future years’ programs and procurements
  10. Voluntary Capacity Factors – allowing for Approved Vendors to submit a voluntary capacity factor based on PV Watts or an equivalent tool
  11. “Small Subscriber” Community Solar Participation
  12. Adjustable Block Program Group Organization – allocating the service territories of any rural electric cooperatives and municipal utilities within MISO to Group A, and any such territories within PJM to Group B, including moving MidAmerican to Group A
  13. Brownfield Site Procurement Volume
  14. Co-Location Restrictions for Developers

The IPA provided a summary of the above changes, and those proposals not accepted, in its Filing Petition.

In addition, the revised Block Group REC Price schedule is provided below (Table 6-2 of the Plan):

Block Group REC Prices ($/REC)

Objections were due on December 18, 2017 with responses to objections due on Thursday, January 11, 2018. Replies to responses will then be due on Thursday, January 25, 2018. The ICC is expected to issue its decision by April 3, 2018. The ICC docket for the plan is accessible here.

Visit our blog for previous and future posts about Illinois’ RPS and the Long Term Plan.

Illinois Power Agency Releases Draft Long-Term Renewable Resources Procurement Plan

Posted October 5th, 2017 by SRECTrade.

On September 29, 2017, the Illinois Power Agency (IPA) released its Draft Long-Term Renewable Resources Procurement Plan (the Draft Plan). The Draft Plan has been released for comment pursuant to Section 16- 111.5(b) of the Public Utilities Act and Sections 1-56 (b) and 1-75(c) of the Illinois Power Agency Act as recently modified by Public Act 99-0906, which went into effect on June 1, 2017.

The Draft Plan sets out the procurements and programs that the IPA has proposed in order to meet the Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) requirements contained in Section 1-75(c)(1) of the Illinois Power Agency Act, including the Adjustable Block Program and the Illinois Solar for All Program. This post provides a summary of the statutory process and a brief overview of the Adjustable Block Program (ABP) as presented in the Draft Plan, but does not contain detail on other elements of the plan, including competitive procurements, the Illinois Solar for All Program, or the Community Renewable Generation Program. For more details on these elements of the plan, please refer to the Draft Plan here.

Statutory Process

The IPA is accepting public comments on the Draft Plan for 45 days. Comments must be submitted to Mario Bohorquez, Planning and Procurement Bureau Chief, at mario.bohorquez@illinois.gov by November 13, 2017.

In addition to accepting public comments on the Draft Plan until November 13, 2017, the IPA will host three public hearings to accept in-person public comments. The dates and locations of these meetings are as follows:

  • Thursday, October 26, 2017, 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm CT: Illinois Commerce Commission Springfield Office, 527 East Capital Ave, Springfield, Illinois. Hearing Room C.
  • Tuesday, October 31, 2017, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm CT: Illinois Commerce Commission Chicago Office, 160 North LaSalle Street, Chicago, Illinois. Room N808.
  • Friday, November 3, 2017, 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm CT: MidAmerican Moline Customer Office, 716 17th Street, Moline, Illinois.

The IPA has 21 days following the end of the 45-day comment period to revise the Draft Plan and to file the Plan with the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC). Based on the timeline presented by the IPA, April 3, 2018 is the deadline for the ICC to enter its order confirming or modifying the Plan. Please refer to the IPA Cover Letter and Hearing Notice for a full overview of the statutory deadlines and timeline.

Adjustable Block Program Overview

The Adjustable Block Program (ABP) features capacity-based blocks set at pre-determined prices for 15-year REC contracts. Key elements of the ABP model include the following, which are detailed in turn:

  1. Project Eligibility
  2. Program Administration & Application
  3. Block Structure & Transition between Blocks
  4. REC Target & Allocation
  5. Pricing
  6. Contract Payment Terms
  7. Performance Assurance & Delivery Requirements

Project Eligibility

There are two types of “new” projects that are eligible for the ABP. “New” is defined in the Draft Plan as “energized on or after June 1, 2017”.

The two project types are:

  1. Photovoltaic distributed renewable energy generation devices (i.e., DG solar); and
  2. Photovoltaic community renewable generation projects (i.e., community solar)

DG solar must be Illinois-sited and interconnected, behind-the-meter, and less than or equal to 2,000 kW AC. Refer to Section 2.5.1.1 of the Draft Plan for full project eligibility requirements.

Section 6.12.1 of the Draft Plan sets forth additional technical system requirements, including system documentation and metering requirements.

Program Administration & Application

The IPA will conduct an RFP for a Program Administrator to run the day-to-day operations of the Adjustable Block Program. The Program Administrator responsibilities will include program and contract management, application review and approval, providing program information for the public, and more.

Participation in the ABP “will take place through, and conditional upon, an Approved Vendor process” proposed by the IPA. Approved Vendors will be required to meet certain criteria and agree to certain terms set forth in the Draft Plan. The use of Approved Vendors will ensure program efficiency and protect Illinois consumers from “bad actors”.

Approved Vendors will submit projects bundled into batches of at least 100 kW and up to 2 MW. Once an Approved Vendor has successfully submitted five batches, the minimum size of a batch for that Approved Vendor will increase to 250 kW. However, the IPA sets forth special exemptions for minority-owned and female-owned businesses. For each project, there will be a non-refundable application fee of $10 per kW, not to exceed $5,000.

Once approved, each batch will result in one contract with one utility. That is, a batch of systems will be contracted with one utility on a portfolio basis. However, the price for the RECs for each system within a batch will be based on the price available within the applicable block on the date of the submittal (see sections below for more on blocks, categories, and pricing). In addition to the non-refundable application fee, there are collateral requirements. See below for information regarding contracting credit requirements.

Project Development Timeline and Extensions

It is not required that projects be energized or interconnected at the time of application. However, all projects will be subject to the following timelines and extensions (based on the contract execution date):

  • DG projects: one year to be developed and energized
  • Community solar projects: 18 months to be developed and energized and to demonstrate that they have sufficient subscribers

The IPA sets forth certain permissible extensions under Section 6.15.2.

Block Structure & Transition between Blocks

Each block will be for a specified quantity of nameplate capacity with a specific REC price. When a block reaches its subscription capacity, projects will be eligible for the next block and its block price.

For each Block 1 as summarized in the table below, all projects submitted within 60 days of the program opening date will be included in that Block 1, regardless of subscription to the block.

For subsequent blocks, each block will be held open for 14 days after the block is fully subscribed. The IPA will announce when a block has been filled and when the closing date will be.

REC Target & Allocation

The initial REC target for the ABP is to have 1,000,000 RECs delivered annually by the end of the 2020-2021 delivery year (i.e., May 31, 2021). Based on a blended 17% capacity factor, this amounts to roughly 666 MW of new photovoltaic generation. However, the IPA notes in its Draft Plan that this goal is not a cap and that, subject to demand and budget constraints, there is potential for additional capacity.

The blocks will be divided into two groups by service territory/geographic category and then further allocated by project category as follows:

Block Groups
  • Group A: for projects located in the service territories of Ameren Illinois, Mt. Carmel Public Utility, and rural electric cooperatives.
  • Group B: for projects located in the service territories of ComEd, MidAmerican, and municipal utilities.
Project Category Allocations

Section 1-75(c)(1)(K) of the Act requires a 25% each allocation for four categories:

  1. DG PV systems less than or equal to 10 kW (“Small systems”);
  2. DG PV systems greater than 10 kW and up to 2,000 kW (“Large systems”);
  3. PV community solar; and
  4. remainder to be allocated by the IPA.

Since it is too soon for the IPA to appropriately allocate the “remainder” category in any other manner, the IPA will distribute the 25% remainder amount evenly, for an allocation of 33.3% in each category 1-3. The IPA will revisit, review and reallocate the 25% remainder amount as needed in the Plan Update.

Accordingly, the 666 MW allocation is summarized by the IPA as follows:

Illustrative Block Opening Volumes (MW)

Capacity Factors

The IPA set a 16.4177% capacity factor for fixed-mount systems and a 19.3149% capacity factor for tracking systems. Accordingly, the estimated REC production would be as follows:

  • Fixed-Mount Systems: 21 RECs over 15 years per 1 kW AC
  • Tracking Systems: 25 RECs over 15 years per 1 kW AC

Pricing

The IPA adapted its REC Pricing Model from the CREST model developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The IPA modified the CREST model’s “input assumptions and post processing of the results.” IPA cautions in its Draft Plan that the prices summarized in the table below “should be viewed as preliminary in nature and not necessarily the prices that will be offered once programs launch, and parties should not take actions in reliance on the availability of these preliminary proposed incentive levels.” Parties can review, explore and comment on the data used, assumptions made, and the REC Pricing Model itself through the public comment process.

Block Group REC Prices ($/REC)

For systems in the Large DG PV and Community Solar categories, the IPA set a base price for each category at the >500 kW – 2,000 kW level with adders to differentiate the price for RECs from different sized systems, as summarized above. The IPA proposes these adders in lieu of sub-dividing project categories by project size or type. Adders are discussed in further detail in Section 6.5 (Tables 6-3 and 6-4) of the Draft Plan.

As shown in the table above, REC prices will step down by 4% in each block after Block 1. However, the IPA will monitor performance during the blocks and may modify the price step-down based upon the speed at which each block is filled.

Contract Payment Terms

For systems that are accepted into the ABP with an executed contract for 15 years of REC deliveries, payment will be made as follows:

  • Full Prepayment for DG systems of no more than 10 kW, paid “at the time that the facility producing the [RECs] is interconnected … and energized.”
  • 5-Year Payment Term for systems larger than 10 kW and community solar projects, with 20% paid at the time of interconnection and energization and the remaining portion “paid ratably over the subsequent 4-year period.”

The standard for “energized” as it applies to contract payment is the “completion of the interconnection approval by the local utility and the registration of the system in GATS or M-RETS so that generation data can be tracked and RECs created.”

Performance Assurance & Delivery Requirements

The Draft Plan sets forth certain credit and delivery requirements to manage performance over the life of the contracts. The Approved Vendor will be required to post collateral equivalent to 10% of the total contract value when each Batch’s contract is approved.

The collateral amount will be maintained for the life of the batch contract, but can be reduced in the later years of the contract when the collateral amount exceeds the remaining value of the contract. This requirement will be maintained at the portfolio level, not the individual system level, to manage the risk of systems that under-perform or have other issues, balanced against projects that over-perform. Under certain conditions, failure to deliver RECs will result in the utility drawing on the collateral to be compensated for undelivered RECs.

Next Steps

SRECTrade intends to participate in the continued statutory process set forth above, and plans to participate in the ABP as an Approved Vendor in a capacity similar to its role in the SPV and DG procurements.

The IPA issued an Errata on the Draft Plan on 10/06/17, which is available here. The Block Group REC Prices ($/REC) table in this post has been updated to reflect these corrected prices.

IL 2017 DG Procurement Round Two – Webinar

Posted August 21st, 2017 by SRECTrade.

Earlier today, SRECTrade hosted a webinar covering the upcoming IL 2017 DG Procurement Round Two, including requirements for applying facilities, IPA and SRECTrade fees, bidding mechanics, and the SRECTrade application process.

SRECTrade’s application window for Round Two is open from today, Monday, August 21st to Friday, September 8th at 5:00pm CDT.

Please feel free to reference the IL DG Procurement Fall 2017 Application Instructions HERE.

For access to the presentation slides, please click HERE. To view a video recording of the webinar, please click the image below.

This document and recording is protected by copyright laws and contains material proprietary to SRECTrade, Inc. It or any components may not be reproduced, republished, distributed, transmitted, displayed, broadcast or otherwise exploited in any manner without the express prior written permission of SRECTrade, Inc. The receipt or possession of this document does not convey any rights to reproduce, disclose, or distribute its contents, or to manufacture, use, or sell anything that it may describe, in whole or in part. If consent to use these materials is granted, a link to the current version of this document on the SRECTrade website must be included for reference.

IL 2017 DG Procurement Round Two Webinar

Posted August 15th, 2017 by SRECTrade.

SRECTrade, Inc. will be hosting a webinar covering the upcoming IL 2017 DG Procurement Round Two on Monday, August 21st, at 1:00pm CST. The October procurement round is the second of two rounds scheduled for 2017.

To register for the webinar, please click HERE.

Our application window for Round Two is open from Monday, August 21st to Friday, September 8th at 5:00pm CDT.

For more information on the upcoming procurement round beforehand, please visit our blog post on the topic here.

SRECTrade Attends IPA’s 2017 RPS Workshops

Posted May 30th, 2017 by SRECTrade.

On May 17th and 18th, SRECTrade attended the Illinois Power Agency’s Renewable Resources Workshops. These workshops centered around the state’s new RPS and its components, including the Adjustable Block Program, Community Solar incentives, and the Illinois Solar For All Programs.

Overview of the New Illinois RPS and the Long-Term Renewable Resources Plan

The new RPS moves to a single compliance regime rather than having separate mechanisms for customers serviced by the alternative retail electricity suppliers (ARES). Under the old RPS, this retail choice lead to budget and target uncertainties. The goal of the new RPS will still be 25% renewables by 2025, but this target will now apply to all retail sales. The Future Energy Jobs Act, Public Act 099-0906, was signed into law on December 6, 2016 and can be read here.

The new law will take effect on June 1, 2017. Please see below for a draft timeline for the implementation of the RPS programs, as provided by the IPA in its Overview presentation:

il-rps-implementation-timeline

Under the new RPS, Illinois is moving away from structured procurements for non-utility scale solar. Projects up to and including 2 MW in size will instead be eligible for participation in the new RPS’ Adjustable Block Program, or ABP, which will provide for 15-year REC contracts.

Key components of the ABP are:

  • Blocks have set sizes and prices that adjust between blocks, which the IPA may review
  • Eligible systems are those energized after June 1, 2017 (emphasis on new projects)
  • Transparent, upfront schedule of REC prices
  • 15 year REC contracts
    • Paid upfront and in full for systems 10 kW and below
    • 20% of contract price paid at interconnection/energization and the remaining portion paid over subsequent 4 year period for systems 10 kW-2 MW (DG or community)
  • The utility will be the counterparty to the executed contracts

The goal of the ABP is to ensure that solar projects are developed in diverse locations and that they are not overly concentrated. The IPA has yet to determine the number, size, categories, and prices of blocks as well as the application, contracting and delivery process. These issues will be resolved during the implementation process.

Community Solar

Community Solar will operate as a subset of the ABP with similar features and the same goal. Under community solar, an electric generating facility credits the value of electricity generated to the subscribers of the facility. A subscriber has a subscription of no less than 200 watts to a community renewable generation project and may total no more than 40% of the nameplate capacity of an individual project. At a high level, the provision for Community Solar Projects will mirror those for larger DG systems, but may differ in project development and application requirements.

Illinois Solar for All Programs

The goal of the Illinois Solar for All Programs is to bring solar PV to low-income communities in Illinois. The programs are distinct but will share aspects with the Adjustable Block Program for DG and Community Solar. The four programs are as followed:

  1. Low-Income Distributed Generation Incentive (22.5%)
  2. Low-Income Community Solar Project Initiative (37.5%)
  3. Incentives for Non-Profits and Public Facilities (15%)
  4. Low-Income Community Solar Pilot Projects (25%)

SRECTrade will continue to participate in the implementation proceedings for the new RPS. In addition, SRECTrade will server as an aggregator in the Fall 2017 DG Procurement. You can see the results from the Spring Utility DG Procurement here.