California Energy Commission Letterhead

Implementation of Renewables
Investment Plan Legislation

Docket No.02-REN-1038
Renewable Energy Program

 

NOTICE TO CONSIDER ADOPTION OF CHANGES TO THE
Existing Renewable Facilities Program Guidebook

The California Energy Commission (Energy Commission) will hold a regularly scheduled Business Meeting on:

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 28, 2009
10 a.m.
CALIFORNIA ENERGY COMMISSION
1516 Ninth Street
First Floor, Hearing Room A
Sacramento, California
(Wheelchair Accessible)

Audio from this meeting will be broadcast over the Internet.
For details, please go to:
www.energy.ca.gov/webcast/

As part of the January 28, 2009, Business Meeting, the Energy Commission will consider adopting revisions to the Guidebook for the Existing Renewable Facilities Program (Guidebook). This Guidebook was initially adopted in February 2003.

The Existing Renewable Facilities Program (ERFP) provides funding production incentives to eligible renewable energy facilities for each kilowatt-hour (kWh) of eligible electricity generated. The facility must use an eligible renewable energy resource to generate electricity and be located either within the state or near the state's border with its first point of interconnection to the transmission systems within the state. Eligible renewable energy resources include biomass, solar thermal electric, and wind. Although existing wind facilities are technically eligible for funding, they currently do not require assistance. Therefore, all ERFP funds are available for eligible existing solid-fuel biomass facilities and solar thermal electric facilities.

The Energy Commission's Renewables Committee recommends these ERFP Guidebook revisions pursuant to Public Resources Code section 25747, which authorizes the Energy Commission to adopt substantive changes to the Guidebook upon providing ten days written notice. Changes shall take effect once approved by the Energy Commission at a publicly noticed meeting.

Background

On September 24, 2008, the Energy Commission adopted the current (Fifth) Edition of the Existing Renewable Facilities Program Guidebook to address issues raised in 2007 by program participants, challenges faced by the Energy Commission in processing funding award applications for the 2007 calendar year, and the enactment of Senate Bill 1036 (Perata, Chapter 685, Statutes of 2007). The Fifth Edition simplified the implementation of the ERFP by basing production incentives on the contract terms, energy price, and technology. These changes increased the transparency of the payment process by providing target prices and production incentive caps for eligible facilities in the Guidebook, and streamlined facilities' reporting requirements.

Due to recent changes to the statute described below, and in order to provide further clarification to program participants, the Renewables Committee recommends additional revisions to the Guidebook as described below.

Assembly Bill 3048 (Committee on Utilities and Commerce, Chapter 558, Statutes of 2008) amended Section 25742 of the Public Resources Code to remove restrictions on biomass fuels that could be used by facilities receiving production incentive payments from the ERFP. Accordingly, the proposed changes to the Guidebook would remove restrictions on biomass fuels per AB 3048. The proposed changes would also reduce reporting requirements for biomass facilities participating in the Existing Renewable Facilities Program. Other proposed changes would clarify the incentive structure offered to facilities receiving "all-in" pricing, clarify the provisions for distributing incentive payments to facilities receiving time-of-use payments, and would make other conforming changes.

The proposed Guidebook revisions are posted on the Energy Commission's website at:

www.energy.ca.gov/renewables/

Hard copies of the proposed Guidebook revisions may be obtained by contacting Gina Fontanilla by phone at: (916) 654-4524 or by e-mail at [gfontani@energy.state.ca.us].

Written Comments

The Energy Commission encourages members of the public to submit written comments on the proposed Guidebook revisions in advance of the Business Meeting. An original and 11 copies of any comments filed by mail or in person should be provided to the Energy Commission's Docket Unit. Parties may also file a single copy electronically with the Docket Unit and follow up with an original copy by mail. If you are providing written comments at the Business Meeting, please make an additional 50 copies available at the beginning of the meeting.

Please send or deliver written materials to:

California Energy Commission
Re: Docket No. 02-REN-1038
Docket Unit, MS-4
1516 Ninth Street
Sacramento, CA 95814-5504
E-Mail: docket@energy.state.ca.us

All written materials filed with the Docket Unit will become part of the public record in this proceeding.

Public Participation

The Energy Commission's Public Adviser's Office provides public assistance to anyone wishing to participate in Energy Commission activities. If you would like information on how to participate in this forum, please contact the Public Adviser's Office at (916) 654-4489 or toll free at (800) 822-6228, by FAX at (916) 654-4493, or by e-mail at [PublicAdviser@energy.state.ca.us]. If you have a disability and require assistance to participate, please contact Lou Quiroz at (916) 654-5146 at least five days in advance.

Please direct all news media inquiries to the Media Office at (916) 654-4989, or by email at [mediaoffice@energy.state.ca.us]. If you have questions on the technical subject matter of this forum, please contact Jason Orta, ERFP Lead, at (916) 653-5851 or by email at [jorta@energy.state.ca.us].

KAREN DOUGLAS
Commissioner and Presiding Member
Renewables Committee

JACKALYNE PFANNENSTIEL
Chairman and Associate Member
Renewables Committee

Mail List: 5503 Existing Renewables
Note: California Energy Commission's formal name is State Energy Resources Conservation and Development Commission.