What’s this? This rulemaking continues the work of R.08-03-008, developing and refining policies, rules, and programs for the California Solar Initiative ( CSI) and the Self-Generation Incentive Program ( SGIP), and considering policies for the development of cost-effective, clean and reliable distributed generation ( DG).
Concerning the CPUC’s decision regarding calculation of the net energy metering ( NEM) cap, Decision (D.)12-05-036, on Aug. 1, PG&E, SCE and SDG&E jointly filed a Response opposing the Petition for Modification of D.12-05-036 filed by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) on July 2 to clarify and modify the element of the decision that would suspend the NEM program in each IOU’s service territory on the later of January 1, 2015, or such time as the IOU has reached its solar photovoltaic target under the CSI, if the CPUC has not issued new policy rules for the NEM program by January 1, 2015. On Aug. 13, SEIA filed a Reply to the joint utility response.
Also concerning D.12-05-036, on Sept. 4, the CPUC issued a Ruling providing instructions on the calculation of noncoincident aggregate customer peak demand pursuant to Ordering Paragraph 3 of D.12-05-036. The ruling directs that: (1) the utilities should use load research data to calculate non-coincident aggregate peak demand, (2) the utilities should use a four-year moving average based on 2007-2010 annual load research data, (3) the calculation should be updated annually but may not decrease below the most recent level determined and (4) the utilities may use 15- or 30-minute interval data to calculate noncoincident aggregate customer peak demand in 2012, but must use 15-minute interval data for the purposes of calculating noncoincident aggregate customer peak demand in subsequent years. As per the ruling, the IOUs must file their Tier 2 advice letters with revised NEM tariffs that conform to Ordering Paragraph 1 of D.12-05-036 and these instructions, as described in Ordering Paragraph 4 of D.12-05-036, within 30 days of the ruling.
In other news, on July 20, ClearEdge Power, Inc. and Bloom Energy Corporation jointly filed a Petition for Modification of D.11-07-031, seeking to expand the types of customers eligible for virtual Net Metering (VNM). D.11-07-031 presently states that the expanded VNM concept can apply to any DG technology that receives a “full retail rate credit under net energy metering.” The petitioners seek to modify D.11-07-031 to direct the IOUs to establish a VNM tariff that not only provides “full retail” credit for all eligible renewable energy resources that meet the requirement of Public Utilities Code Section 2827, but also a separate VNM tariff that provides “generation only” credit for fuel cell technologies that meet the requirements of Public Utilities Code Section 2827.10. Thus, the requested modification would allow the expanded VNM concept to apply to “generation only” Net Metering for fuel cells not fueled by a renewable fuel. On Aug. 17, UTC Power Corporation filed a response, and on Aug. 20, PG&E, SDG&E and SCE jointly filed and Lightsail Energy and Danlin Solar Corp. jointly filed responses to the petition for modification. ClearEdge Power, Inc. and Bloom Energy Corporation jointly filed their Reply to the responses on Aug. 30.
On Aug. 6, the CPUC issued D.12-08-008 modifying D.10-01-022 to adjust the incentive structure of the CSI-Thermal Program. The decision modified D.10-01-022 to provide increased incentives in the early steps of the program to both natural gas and electric displacing solar water heating ( SWH) systems, while retaining the goal of replacing the equivalent of 200,000 natural gas-fired water heating systems with SWH systems. Furthermore, the Step 1 incentive level for single-family residential customers was increased by 45%, and the Step 1 incentive level for commercial and multifamily residential customers was increased by 13.33%. Additionally, the new incentive structure applies to all applications made after the date the proposed decision was mailed for comment. Subsequently, on Sept. 4, as per Ordering Paragraph 2 of D.12-08-008, the CSI-Thermal Program Administrators jointly filed a Tier 2 Advice Letter to modify the CSI-Thermal Program Handbook to incorporate the changes in the decision. Protests to the advice Letter were due Sept. 24, and the advice letter was made effective Oct. 4.
On Aug. 3, CCSE filed a Petition for Modification of D.10‐09‐046, D.08‐10‐036, D.11‐07‐031 and D.06‐08‐028 to address CSI general market (GM) program administration budget issues within SDG&E service territory. Specifically, CCSE seeks modification of these decisions to ensure authorized CSI GM program administrative budget funds are appropriately distributed among the administrative budget subcategories, ensure expenses are charged to the appropriate CSI program account or nonprogram funding source to provide sufficient funding of the CSI GM program administration budget and allow the residential customer sector in CCSE’s program territory access to greater than one‐third of CSI GM program megawatts ( MW) by removing the specific allocation of two‐thirds of CSI MW for the nonresidential customer sector. CCSE contends that collectively the requested modifications will help CCSE to meet its predetermined overall CSI GM program MW goal, reduce any nonresidential customer sector incentive budget shortfall and alleviate CSI GM program administration budget issues in CCSE’s program territory. Various parties filed responses to the petition for modification on Sept. 4, and CCSE filed a Reply to the responses on Sept. 14.
On Sept. 14, the CPUC issued Final Resolution E-4519, approving revisions to the Self-Generation Incentive Program Handbook proposed in the SGIP Program Administrators’ joint advice letter filed on Feb. 17, 2012, with modifications to include elimination of certain data formatting requirements by performance data providers for combined heat and power systems 300 kilowatts and smaller and a five percent line loss differential between peak and off-peak times for the calculation of round-trip efficiency for advanced energy storage. The final resolution directs the SGIP Program Administrators to file a Tier 1 advice letter revising the Self-Generation Incentive Program Handbook to conform to these changes within 30 days of the issuance of the final resolution.
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