Posts Tagged ‘Maryland’

Maryland Update – Senate Passes SB791

Posted April 4th, 2012 by SRECTrade.

Today, the Maryland Senate voted 37-9 in favor of Senate Bill 791. We have been following this piece of legislation closely and have provided estimates and analysis around its impact on the Maryland Solar REC market.

Overall, the legislation pulls forward the Solar RPS requirements, reaching the existing 2022 Solar % requirements in 2020. The chart below demonstrates the existing requirements vs. the proposed requirements under the new legislation.

MD Solar RPS Current vs. HB1187

The next step for the bill is to move on to the Governor’s office to be signed into law.  Maryland stakeholders expect the legislation to be well received by the Governor who will likely sign the bill in May.

We’ll continue to provide updates as the bill is finalized and signed into law. Before then we should point out this bill was successfully promoted in part due to the efforts of the Maryland-DC-Virginia Solar Energy Industries Association (MDV-SEIA) and strong grassroots support from Maryland stakeholders at large.

Update – Maryland Proposes New Solar Legislation

Posted April 2nd, 2012 by SRECTrade.

Since our last update on legislation to adjust the Solar RPS requirements in Maryland, there has been some movement in both the House and the Senate.

After HB1187 passed out of the House Economic Matters Committee, the bill was heard on the floor of the House and passed unanimously 131-0. Earlier last week, the Senate version of the bill, SB791, was voted down in the Senate Finance Committee, 4-7. The bill was then reconsidered by the committee the other day with the original vote being overturned, 8-2 (with one abstention).

The next stage for SB791 is to bring it up for vote on the floor of the Senate. Stakeholders expect this will take place Monday or Wednesday of this week. Some have expressed that the bill may be met with some resistance from the Senate, but it is expected that should it pass out of the Senate it will be well received by the Governor.

If you have an interest in voicing your thoughts on this piece of legislation, feel free to visit this link to find your appropriate representative. We’ll continue to provide updates through our blog as the bill makes its way through the process.

Maryland Proposes New Solar Legislation

Posted March 22nd, 2012 by SRECTrade.

For a PDF copy of this analysis please click here: Maryland Proposes New Solar Legislation

In February 2012, the Maryland legislature introduced legislation that directly impacts the MD solar industry. Two sets of legislation are proposed. The first set, House Bill 1187 (HB1187) and Senate Bill (SB791) seek to adjust the solar goals outlined in the MD Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). The second set House Bill 864 (HB864) and Senate Bill 595 (SB595) propose adjustments to the state law to allow for “Community Solar.”

In order for either sets of legislation to be signed into law, both the House and Senate versions must be passed and a final bill signed by the Governor. We detail both sets of legislation below.

Maryland RPS Adjustment

Companion bills HB1187 and SB791, pull forward the percentage requirement of the solar portion of the MD RPS, reaching its 2.0% solar target in 2020 instead of 2022. In addition to pulling the RPS % forward, the percentage requirements in the interim, beginning in 2013, would also increase.

The chart below demonstrates the existing RPS % versus the proposed percentage requirements under HB1187/SB791.

MD Solar RPS Current vs. HB1187

While the overall MD RPS solar goal does not change under HB1187/SB791, the amount of SRECs required increases in each of the interim years beginning in 2013 (SREC requirements are directly tied to the RPS % requirements). These increases could have a positive impact on SREC pricing if the market is unable to develop the needed supply during these future periods. Although the increases are meaningful (especially in the later years, see charts below), large projects such as First Solar’s20 MW Hagerstown, MDproject and Constellation Energy’s16.1 and 1.3 MW Emmitsburg, MDprojects can still substantially impact the SREC market.

Current vs. Proposed and Additional

As of March 7, 2012,PJM GATS reported 41.8 MWof operational MD eligible capacity. Under the existing MD2012 RPS requirements, Maryland needs an average of 56.1 MW operational all year long, or 67,310 SRECs. Additionally, any left-over supply from 2010 and 2011 also can be used to meet MD2012 compliance requirements. Given continued development in the state, which has averaged approximately 2.3 MW/month over the last 12 months (LTM), and the larger projects noted above, the increase in capacity as proposed by HB1187 and SB791 would help absorb continued solar build out.

Maryland could expect to see approximately 102.2 MW of operational capacity at the beginning of 2013. This figure takes into consideration the online capacity as of 3/7/12, the impact of the Constellation and Maryland Solar projects (assumed to be fully operational by the end of 2012), and continued development at the same pace as the LTM period. The table below demonstrates how our estimated 2013 beginning balance capacity compares to the number of SRECs required under the current 2013 RPS requirements versus the proposed requirements under HB1187/SB791.

estimated 2013 beginning balance

Where Does HB1187/SB791 Currently Stand?

Earlier this week, HB1187, the House version of the bill, was heard in the House Economic Matters committee. A couple panels with industry analysts and regional installation professionals presented their thoughts on the impact of pulling forward the Solar RPS requirements. After the reading and the presentations, the bill was unanimously passed out of committee.

It is expected that the House bill will reach the floor for final vote later this week or early next week. Additionally, the Senate bill needs to be heard in the Senate Finance Committee before it can make it to the floor of the Senate. Should both sides of the legislature vote in favor of the bills, the final step would be to have it sent to Governor O’Malley to be signed into law.

Community Energy Bills HB864/SB595

In addition to HB1187/SB791, there are 2 bills in the MD House and Senate,HB864andSB595, which provide guidelines and regulations for investing, operating, and participating in the usage of electricity generated from shared community energy generation facilities. While Annapolis insiders suggest that these “community solar” bills have a way to go before they are implemented, important initial legwork is being completed to make community solar projects feasible. The highlights of the current versions of the bills include:

– Defining that community energy-generating facilities and their subscribers or subscriber organizations are not considered Electric Companies or Electricity Suppliers

– Provides a frame work for crediting generated electricity to the subscribers of the facility

– Outlines who can be a qualified project owner

– Explains how energy not fully allocated to users of the project’s electricity will be credited/purchased as wholesale electricity

– Implements nameplate megawatt capacity caps, currently 2 MW, on projects that participate in a community energy project structure

SRECTrade will continue to keep a close eye on the legislative process across these bills and provide updates as they become available.

MD to Accept In-state Solar Water Heating Systems for SREC Market

Posted May 27th, 2011 by SRECTrade.

Maryland recently passed legislation which will allow residential-scale in-state solar water heating systems (SWH) installed on or after June 1st 2011 to sell SRECs into the MD SREC market.  Eligible systems will, at a maximum, be able to produce 5 SRECs per year. The law does not go in to effect until January 1st 2012, so even if the system is installed now it will be another few months before they can monetize their SRECs. The bill states that eligible SWH systems are those that are not used solely for heating a pool or hot tub and are either metered by a device that meets the standards of the “International Organization of Legal Metrology” (OIML) or be OG-300 certified.

Another requirement is that the SWH collectors (the product that captures the sun’s heat) must be a “glazed liquid-type flat-plate or tubular solar collector by the OG-100 standard of the Solar Ratings and Certification Corporation (SRCC).”

Because SWH systems produce heat and not electricity, output is measured in British Thermal Units (BTUs) and not kW-hrs. In order for these systems to produce SRECs equivalent to their PV-system counterparts, they must be certified and metered in a way that can allow for accurate measuring and unit conversions. By multiplying each BTU by a conversion factor of .000293, one can determine the kWh equivalent production from the system. As a point of reference, a single a 21 ft2 flat plate solar thermal collector located in Baltimore, MD that has a conversion efficiency of 60% may produce as many as 2 SRECs per year.  Conversion efficiencies and BTU output will vary depending on the type of SWH panel used.

Solar Capacity in the SREC States – January 2011

Posted February 2nd, 2011 by SRECTrade.

SRECTrade SREC Markets Report: January 2011

The following post outlines the megawatts of solar capacity certified and/or registered to create SRECs in the SREC markets SRECTrade currently serves.

SREC Supply January 2011

PJM Eligible Systems

As of the end of January, there were 12,240 solar PV (12,001) and solar thermal (239) systems registered and eligible to create SRECs in the PJM Generation Attribute Tracking System registry. Of these eligible systems, 38 (0.3%) have a nameplate capacity of 1 megawatt or greater, of which only 3 systems are greater than 5 MW. The largest system, currently located in Ohio, is 12 MW,  and the second largest, located in Chicago and eligible for the PA, DC, and MD markets, is 10 MW. The third largest system, located in NJ, is 5.6 MW.

Massachusetts DOER Qualified Projects

As of January 10, 2011, there were 206 MA DOER qualified solar projects; 183 operational and 23 not operational. Of these qualified systems, 9 (4.4%) have a nameplate capacity of 1 megawatt or greater, of which only 2 are between 1.5 and 2 MW. None of the projects greater than 1 MW are currently operational.

Capacity Summary By State

The tables above demonstrate the capacity breakout by state. Note, that for all PJM GATS registered projects, each state includes all projects certified to sell into that state. State RPS programs that allow for systems sited in other states to participate have been broken up by systems sited in state and out of state. Additional detail has been provided to demonstrate the total capacity of systems only certified for one specific state market versus being certified for multiple state markets. For example, PA includes projects only certified to sell into the PA SREC market, broken out by in state and out of state systems, as well as projects that are also certified to sell into PA and Other State markets broken out by in state and out of state systems (i.e. OH, DC, MD, DE, NJ). PA Out of State includes systems sited in states with their own state SREC market (i.e. DE) as well as systems sited in states that have no SREC market (i.e. VA). Also, it is important to note that the Current Capacity represents the total megawatts eligible to produce and sell SRECs as of the noted date, while the Estimated Required Capacity – Current and Next Reporting Year represents the estimated number of MW that need to be online on average throughout the reporting period to meet the RPS requirement within each state. For example, New Jersey needs approximately 255 MW online for the entire 2011 reporting year to meet the RPS requirement. Additionally, the data presented above does not include projects that are in the pipeline or currently going through the registration process in each state program. This data represents specifically the projects that have been approved for the corresponding state SREC markets as of the date noted.


Maryland follows New Jersey and raises RPS levels

Posted May 17th, 2010 by SRECTrade.

Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley has said he will sign into law a new Renewable Portfolio Standard that increases the Alternative Compliance Payments (ACP) due if utilities don’t buy enough SRECs. Higher ACPs support higher SREC prices which in turn encourage more solar development.

While rebate programs have proven unreliable as state budgets are stained, SREC programs have proven to be a stable incentive for solar. New Jersey recently suspended their solar rebate program but has increased their ACP levels and the percentage of solar electricity required three times. Maryland is following suit, increasing the ACP to $400 through 2014 and slowing the pace that they lower ACP.

Compare the old and new Maryland RPS:

Year Solar RPS % Old ACP New ACP
2009 0.01% $400
2010 0.025% $400 $400
2011 0.05% $350 $400
2012 0.10% $350 $400
2013 0.20% $300 $400
2014 0.30% $300 $400
2015 0.40% $250 $350
2016 0.50% $250 $350
2017 0.55% $200 $200
2018 0.90% $200 $200
2019 1.20% $150 $150
2020 1.50% $150 $150
2021 1.85% $100 $100
2022 2.00% $100 $100
2023 2.00% $50

Maryland Governor to accelerate the solar RPS

Posted January 22nd, 2010 by SRECTrade.

In a press release issued by the Governor’s office, Governor Martin O’Malley has prioritized solar electricity in his 2010 agenda. He plans to increase the solar RPS requirement in the earlier years. Currently, compared to other states, Maryland’s RPS solar requirement increases exponentially in the later years. It appears the Governor is planning to straighten out the growth path so that more solar is required earlier.  This is great news for the industry in Maryland in the next five years because it allows the state to remain competitive with other states in the region while the solar industry is in its formative years. Hopefully this will help establish the state at the foreground of industry along with New Jersey and Delaware.  Here are the specific agenda items relating to the solar RPS:

  • This legislation will accelerate Maryland’s solar RPS requirements in the early years (2011 – 2017), resulting in more residential and commercial solar installation and greater job creation.
  • It will make the phase-in of the Solar RPS more evenly distributed over the next decade and provide more long-term support for Maryland‘s growing solar industry.  This change will put the State’s solar goals more in line with New Jersey and Delaware.
  • Additional solar energy in Maryland will decrease peak load electricity prices in the summertime, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by displacing fossil-fueled powered generation, create new green jobs, and help Maryland meet its renewable energy goals.

Maryland Update

Posted July 13th, 2009 by SRECTrade.

The July 10th auction closes with a clearing price of $375 for 2009 credits! We are looking forward to the next auction on August 7th. The August auction will be primarily for 2010 credits, but parties interested in selling or buying any remaining 2009 credits may also participate.

Maryland system owners can also sell their credits to Pennsylvania, Washington DC, and North Carolina. Maryland prices look to be the highest as of now, but in future years we expect the highest prices to come from Pennsylvania as a result of the state’s future expected increase in SACP. For more information about cross-listing your SRECs, click here