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New Renewable Energy Tracking System Launched for Western U.S.
WREGIS Supports California's Renewable Energy Progress and Promotes "Green" Energy
SACRAMENTO - The California Energy Commission today announced the launch of the Western Renewable Energy Generation Information System (WREGIS), a renewable energy registry and tracking system for electricity generation.
"The WREGIS system is a critical element in measuring California's success as we move forward to reaching the mandate to generate 20 percent of our electricity from renewable energy by 2010," stated Energy Commission Chairman Jackalyne Pfannenstiel. "California is also serious about achieving our goal of generating 33 percent of our electricity from renewable energy by 2020. With WREGIS, we can manage the many transactions that will allow us to achieve the mandate as we track our success."
The system, which is the largest of its kind in the world in terms of coverage, includes the western United States, parts of Canada, and a portion of Baja California, will be used to meet renewable portfolio standard requirements and other renewable energy policies for states and provinces within the Western Interconnection transmission area.
"We are pleased to help get this project up and running," said Louise McCarren, Chief Executive Officer of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC), which serves as the institutional home for the program. "WREGIS fits well with WECC's west-wide scope and history of providing independent and verifiable information and analyses to users of the Western power system."
The innovative, independent regional system was developed in response to policies set by the California Legislature and the Western Governors' Association to develop and implement a system tracking renewable energy generation. WREGIS will track the renewable generation to help ensure the credibility of the "green" value of renewable electricity. Using independent, verifiable, and reliable data, the system will make it easier to implement renewable policies and achieve renewable energy goals. WREGIS will facilitate the growth of renewable energy throughout the Western U.S.
Data in WREGIS includes megawatt-hours produced, fuel source, facility location, and all state, provincial and voluntary renewable energy program qualifications. One WREGIS certificate is issued for each megawatt-hour of renewable energy produced and deposited on the grid. To prevent double counting, each WREGIS certificate has its own unique serial number.
WREGIS consists of two components: software provided by APX, Inc. with program administration by the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC). WECC covers 1.8 million square miles in the Western Interconnection System and provides an independent forum for the day-to-day administration of WREGIS.
Participation in WREGIS is voluntary. WREGIS will be available in the area covered by the Western Interconnection System, which covers Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Idaho, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Texas, South Dakota, Nebraska, British Columbia, Alberta and the northern portion of Baja California.
In 2002, the California Legislature charged the Energy Commission with developing a tracking system for implementing California's Renewable Portfolio Standard. The functional design of WREGIS was developed through a stakeholder process that involved utility regulators, state energy offices, electric market participants, consumer advocates and other stakeholders.
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Created by the Legislature in 1974, the California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency. The Energy Commission has five major responsibilities: forecasting future energy needs and keeping historical energy data; licensing thermal power plants 50 megawatts or larger; promoting energy efficiency through appliance and building standards; developing energy technologies and supporting renewable energy; an planning for and directing state response to energy emergency.
Members of the Energy Commission are Chairman Jackalyne Pfannenstiel; Vice Chair James D. Boyd; Commissioners Jeffrey Byron; John Geesman; and Dr. Arthur H. Rosenfeld.