Posts Tagged ‘North Carolina SREC Trading’

What Happened to the North Carolina SREC Market?

Posted June 23rd, 2011 by SRECTrade.

Since its inception last summer, the North Carolina SREC market has not materialized into the type of market seen in other states like New Jersey, Maryland and Massachusetts. There are several factors lending to the stagnation of this market, many of which were covered in our blog post “Where is the NC SREC Market?” published last August. Since then, the nascent NC market has continued to dwindle. Most small solar facilities in North Carolina have been selling their SRECs into the DC market, an opportunity that will be closing as new legislation in DC shuts the market to out-of-state facilities.

A few factors  impair the viability of the North Carolina market:

1) The absence of both an SACP and transparent market prices make it difficult for projects to find viable SREC-based financing.

2) There is a shortage of buyers. The two main buyers, Duke Energy and Progress Energy, which serve 65% of NC utility customers and provide 71% of the state’s electricity, have both met their NC REPS compliance needs for solar, with Progress locking out SRECs until 2014 and Duke having ample supply through 2018, the final year of RPS compliance.

3) North Carolina accepts 25% of its SRECs from out of state sited facilities.

In an effort to curb these seemingly premature accomplishments by utilities, legislators in North Carolina introduced two important clean energy bills in the last few months: the Solar Jobs Bill (HB495/SB473) and the Energy Independence and Job Creation Bill (SB694). The former aspired to increase the solar requirement for utilities from .2% to .4% of retail electric sales by 2018 in an effort to further develop the state’s solar industry, while also requiring that no more than 12.5% of the RECs applied towards the RPS requirements come from out-of-state generators. If this bill were to pass, it would help catalyze an NC SREC market as utilities would need to find additional sources of SRECs to meet new compliance targets. To create more flexibility, the Energy Independence and Job Creation Bill allowed for “third party sales” of renewable energy, or the ability for facilities with third-party owned renewable systems to buy electricity directly from the third-party without classifying them as utilities, so long as their capacity is under 2 MW. This bill would open the North Carolina market up to third-party financing companies like SunRun, SolarCity and Sungevity, which would foster the development of solar leasing and PPAs.

Unfortunately, neither of these bills were taken up by legislators by the crossover deadline on June 9th, effectively rendering them dead until the start of the 2013 session. For now, the future remains unclear for a more active SREC market in North Carolina.

Additional Resources:

Relevant Utility Rebates

NC Sustainable Energy Association – legislative news

NC GreenPower – non-profit created by the NC Utilities Commission

North Carolina Systems Able to Sell SRECs into DC

Posted July 20th, 2010 by SRECTrade.

The DC Public Service Commission is accepting applications for facilities in ALL of North Carolina.  This word comes after some initial confusion regarding the eligibility of areas adjacent to territories directly served by PJM.  The DC market provides an alternative means for selling SRECs for small commercial and residential facilities in North Carolina.

Although prices in the DC market are close to $300 per SREC, the market is small.  In 2010, a total of approximately 3 megawatts must be installed in order to meet the requirement.  That number grows to 15 megawatts in 5 years (dwarfed in comparison by North Carolina which grows from 23 MW to 85 MW in 5 years).  Considering that facilities in the entire PJM region are eligible for the DC market, it is quite possible that this market becomes oversubscribed in the future. We foresee the DC market as a viable option for smaller facilities (under 250 kW) for now, but in the long-run, it will be difficult for the solar industry in North Carolina to rely on DC legislation. The long-term solution for the North Carolina solar market hinges on the state making some changes to the current legislation that encourage the development of a real in-state SREC market.

In the meantime, SRECTrade is accepting applications from solar facilities in North Carolina.  We will register the facilities in both DC and NC.  SRECs will be sold in the market with the best pricing.  To get your NC system signed up, just fill out our EasyREC forms here.

More on North Carolina soon. You can always check our North Carolina page.

North Carolina launches NC-RETS for tracking SRECs in state

Posted July 8th, 2010 by SRECTrade.

The North Carolina Renewable Energy Tracking System (NC-RETS) designed by APX, Inc. launched earlier this week.  This will be North Carolina’s online mechanism for the issuance and tracking of SRECs.  Both solar photovoltaic and solar hot water projects are eligible to receive Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs) through NC-RETS, and North Carolina electricity producers will use this system to demonstrate their compliance with North Carolina’s Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard.

Registration of a solar project with NC-RETS requires the creation of a NC-RETS general account and prior registration of the project with the North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC). Projects under 1 MW will be able to self-report their energy production data into the NC-RETS system to receive SRECs, while larger projects will require a designated “Qualified Reporting Entity” with a separate NC-RETS account to upload generation data on their behalf.    There are no fees associated with the creation of NC-RETS accounts, and the cost of operating the tracking system will be billed to NC electric power suppliers based on each one’s percentage of load in the state.

RECs are readily transferrable between NC-RETS accounts and will be “retired” in the accounts of NC electricity suppliers in order to demonstrate their portfolio compliance.  NC-RETS also allows account holders to import SRECs from and export SRECs to tracking systems in other states.   As of now, there is 2-way transferability with the North American Renewable Registry (NARR) tracking system.  Transferability with PJM GATS is expected shortly and conversations are ongoing with WREGIS, ERCOT, and MRETS.  There is a negligible $.01 fee per SREC exported but imports will be free.

Although there is a “bulletin board”, no financial agreements will take place on NC-RETs, and SRECTrade is accepting bids from both sellers and buyers in NC in anticipation of a North Carolina SREC auction.  Our EasyREC program will streamline the process for solar power generators looking to receive and sell their SRECs efficiently in North Carolina.  When a solar facility owner signs up with EasyREC, SRECTrade will quickly take care of registering the project with the NCUC  and NC-RETS!  As always, the solar facility owner retains ownership of all SRECs until they are sold at auction, at which point SRECTrade takes care of transferring the SRECs to the buyer through NC-RETS.  Our EasyREC service also covers annual updates required for continued NCUC registration.

Find out more on North Carolina’s SREC program here