This letter was submitted by Acadia Center to the Governor's Council on Climate Change (GC3). With greenhouse gas emissions increasing since 2012, Connecticut must act quickly to meet its mandatory 2020 emissions cap. Acadia Center proposes three short-term mitigation strategies that Connecticut could pursue almost immediately to reverse the current emissions trend: electrification of building heating and vehicles, increased solar PV deployment, and expanded energy efficiency.
In the current United Illuminating (UI) rate case, sixteen national and regional organizations urge Connecticut's Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) to reduce the fixed charge, or monthly basic service charge, currently paid by residential customers of UI. The supporting organizations represent a diverse coalition, including consumer groups protecting low income and vulnerable ratepayers, solar, storage, and energy efficiency businesses, and public interest organizations fighting for cleaner air and lower greenhouse gas emissions.
Connecticut’s “Lead by Example” (LBE) energy efficiency program does not appear to be on track to reach its mandatory goal of a 20% reduction in energy use in state buildings by 2018. The General Assembly established the LBE program in 2011 to reduce costly energy waste in state buildings, lower the state’s significant operating expense for energy use, and make the state a model for energy efficiency and sustainability. This report finds that mandatory annual reporting for the LBE plan originally filed in 2012 has not been submitted by the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), as required by law. This apparent failure to report severely hampers any attempt to review and evaluate the effectiveness of the LBE program’s performance.
Since the initial development of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), participating states have been climate leaders time and time again. Building on this legacy, RGGI states must now determine the program’s next chapter. As the 2016 RGGI Program Review commences, this report describes the reforms RGGI states should make to achieve both state and federal climate requirements while continuing to generate benefits for the region.
Part I of the RGGI Status Report focuses on key trends since RGGI’s launch, including electric sector drivers, economic impacts, and the status of the RGGI market. The report demonstrates RGGI’s success in reducing emissions, fostering a clean energy transition, and supporting regional economic growth. Part II of this report will explain how reforms considered in the 2016 Program Review can solidify RGGI’s role in achieving state-level climate commitments and encourage development of effective carbon policy under EPA’s Clean Power Plan.
This document summarizes the proposals and key concepts for valuing distributed energy resources (DER) submitted by twenty-five parties and groups of parties in Case 15-E-0751, initiated by the New York Public Service Commission (NY PSC). In April 2014, the NY PSC announced the beginning of a set of ambitious regulatory proceedings called Reforming the Energy Vision (“REV”) to comprehensively examine the State’s energy policies and regulatory frameworks. Six policy objectives were set for this proceeding: enhanced customer knowledge and tools that will support effective management of their total energy bill; market animation and leverage of ratepayer contributions; system wide efficiency; fuel and resource diversity; system reliability and resiliency; and reduction of carbon emissions. Case 15-E-0751 was initiated to develop an “interim methodology” for valuing DER through electricity rates as well as a longer term process for establishing a full value of DER.
The paper ‘Charge Without a Cause?’ was authored by Paul Chernick with Resource Insight in Massachusetts; John T. Colgan, a former Commissioner at the Illinois Commerce Commission; Rick Gilliam with Vote Solar in Colorado; Douglas Jester with 5 Lakes Energy in Michigan; and Mark LeBel with Acadia Center in Massachusetts. As the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) prepares to hold its 2016 Summer Meetings, this paper assesses an approach to electricity rate design now being proposed by some utilities around the country in response to a changing energy landscape — imposing “demand charges” on residents and small businesses in addition to the large commercial and industrial customers where these types of charges have typically applied.
The planning and investment policies that govern our power grid were developed in an earlier era, when large fossil-fueled power plants were constructed to energize population centers. Longstanding policies skew decisions in favor of legacy power grid investments over cleaner, often less expensive and more advanced solutions, and stand in the way of achieving deep emissions reductions and widespread consumer benefits.
Acadia Center analyzed new data on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in Connecticut to develop an updated emissions inventory for the 1990 to 2015 time period. The analysis also looked at possible drivers of recent emissions increases, including fuel prices, economic activity, and policy developments. The updated emissions inventory is intended to help inform and guide both the 2016 Comprehensive Energy Strategy proceeding and the ongoing deliberations of the Governor’s Council on Climate Change.
A long-awaited bill that could shape the Commonwealth’s energy future (H. 4336) has been proposed by lawmakers in the Massachusetts House of Representatives. This summary provides an overview of the bill’s contents, scope, and areas for improvements.