Title 30: Public Service
Chapter 89: RENEWABLE ENERGY PROGRAMS
30 V.S.A. § 8003. Renewable energy pricing
§ 8003. Renewable energy pricing
(a) An electric utility, municipal department formed under local charter or chapter 79 of this title, or electric cooperative formed under chapter 81 of this title may implement a renewable energy pricing program under this section for its customers, or offer customers the option of making a voluntary contribution to the Vermont clean energy development fund established under section 8015 of this title. Such renewable energy pricing programs may include, but are not limited to, tariffs, standard special contracts, or other arrangements whose purpose is to increase the company's reliance on, or the customer's support of, renewable sources of energy or the type and quantity of renewable energy resources available.
(b) A standard special contract for renewable pricing that has been approved as to form and substance by the board under this section shall not require further approval by the board under section 229 of this title as to individual customers who choose to execute that contract.
(c) Renewable pricing programs may be priced in the form of a premium relative to the tariff that would otherwise apply; provided the premium shall be cost-based, shall reasonably reflect the difference between acquiring the renewable energy and the utility's alternative cost of power, including administrative costs, and shall be adjusted via such periodic adjustment mechanisms, including adjustment clauses, as the board shall approve as part of a renewable pricing program. Any renewable pricing program shall require that any costs of power in excess of the company's alternative cost of power shall be borne solely by those customers who elect to participate in the renewable pricing program.
(d) Tradeable renewable energy credits (with or without other features), tradeable emissions credits, emission offsets, or other market instruments created or obtained by energy resources acquired pursuant to or as part of a renewable pricing program approved under this section shall be permanently retired by or on behalf of the program's subscribers, and shall not be sold or otherwise disposed of. However, if a program is not fully subscribed, any such instruments created or obtained by the unsubscribed portion of the program may be sold or disposed of at no less than market value if the net proceeds of such sale or disposal are used to reduce the cost paid under the renewable pricing program.
(e) The board shall ensure that disclosures and representations made regarding renewable pricing programs are accurate, are reasonably supported by objective data, disclose the types of technologies used, whether the energy is Vermont-based or not, and clearly distinguish between energy or tradeable energy credits provided from renewable and nonrenewable sources, and existing and new sources.
(g) The board shall consider the following factors in deciding whether and upon what conditions to approve a proposed renewable energy pricing program:
(1) minimization of marketing and administrative expenses;
(2) auditing or certification of sources of energy or tradeable renewable energy credits;
(3) marketing and promotion plans;
(4) effectiveness of the program in meeting the goals of promoting renewable energy generation and public understanding of renewable energy sources in Vermont;
(5) retention by the program of renewable energy production incentives, tax incentives and other incentives earned or otherwise obtained by energy resources acquired pursuant to or as part of a renewable energy pricing program approved under this section to reduce the cost of any premiums paid under this section; and
(6) costs imposed on nonparticipating customers arising on account of the implementation of the voluntary renewable energy pricing program. (Added 2003, No. 69, § 1, eff. June 17, 2003; amended 2007, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 20; 2009, No. 45, § 4a, eff. May 27, 2009.)