Local Local Government Renewable Energy Self-Generation Bill Credit Transfer Program (RES-BCT)
The RES-BCT program (formerly AB 2466) was established by the Legislature effective January 1, 2009 and is codified in Section 2830 of the Public Utilities Code. It allows a Local Government with one or more eligible renewable generating facilities to export energy to the grid and receive generation credits to benefitting accounts of the same Local Government (AB 1031 expanded applicability to universities). AB 512, signed into law in 2011 and effective on January 1, 2012, further modified this program to increase the generator size limit to 5 MW per generation account.
RES-BCT Frequently Asked Questions
- How many customers and MWs have implemented RES-BCT to date?As of Q2 of 2012, PG&E has 0 customers that have implemented RES-BCT.
- How can I access the approved PG&E RES-BCT Tariff?The RES-BCT tariff can be found here.
- How can I access the RES-BCT interconnection application process?The interconnection application process can be found here. Please note that the application forms required to initiate the interconnection process are below. Please see the website for additional requirements in addition to these forms.
- PG&E’s Rule 21 Generating Facility Interconnection Application (Form 79-974)
- PG&E’s Rule 21 Generating Facility Interconnection Agreement (Form 79-973)
- PG&E’s Local Government Application for An Arrangement To Take Service on Rate Schedule RES-BCT With Interconnected Eligible Renewable Generation of Not More Than 5 Megawatts (Form 79-1112)
- What does RES-BCT do?This program allows a Local Government to install up to 5 MW of renewable generation per location (generating account) within its geographic boundary, offset any coincident usage at the generator site, and convert excess electricity exported to the utility grid to credits that can be used to offset generation component charges at one or more other locations (benefitting accounts) within the same geographic boundary. PG&E worked very closely with the authors of bill creating this program, and submitted a letter of support, in order to help our Local Government customers develop additional supplies of renewable power.
- How is a Local Government defined under RES-BCT?To be eligible for RES-BCT, the customer must be a “Local Government”, defined as a city, county, whether general law or chartered, city and county, special district, school district, political subdivision, or other Local public agency, if authorized by law to generate electricity, but shall not mean a joint powers authority, the state or any agency or department of the state, other than an individual "Campus" (defined as an individual community college campus, individual California State University campus, or individual University of California campus) - of the University of California or the California State University.
- How does RES-BCT work?A Local Government (or third party) can install an eligible renewable generator on property that is owned or under the control of the Local Government and located within its geographic boundary, which is called the “generating account”. The generator account may or may not have electrical usage (load) on it.
PG&E will install a generator account meter that separately measures both the electricity drawn from the utility grid and that exported to the grid; the metered exports to the grid are used to calculate the generation credits.
The Local Government will identify and provide the allocation percent among the designated “benefiting account(s)”; up to 50 accounts per “arrangement” may be designated to receive these generation credits. The benefiting accounts must be within the Local Government’s geographic boundaries, and on property that it owns, operates, or controls.
- How will the excess electricity be credited to the Benefitting Accounts?All accounts, both generating and benefitting accounts, must take service on an applicable bundled, time-of-use (TOU) rate schedule.
The value of the credit for the exports to the grid from the renewable generator (generating account) will be established using the generation component (less PCIA, if it is positive - see PCIA question below) of the time of use energy charge of the generator account rate schedule.
The credit will be allocated to the benefiting accounts on a TOU period basis. The export credits will only be applied to the generation portion of the energy charges of the benefiting accounts (i.e., they cannot offset non-generation charges, nor can they offset the generation portion of the demand charge, or any other parts of the bill).
- How will the accounts be billed?The generating and benefitting accounts are calculated and paid monthly and will be trued-up on the customer’s yearly billing cycle.
On a monthly basis, if there is more credit earned in a given month on the benefitting accounts than the customer needs to pay, the net credit will be carried forward to the next month.
At the end of a customer’s billing cycle year, PG&E will true up each benefitting account, and then if any credit remains at the true-up, it will be applied to other benefiting accounts that have remaining generation component charges. If none of the other benefiting accounts have remaining generation component charges, the credit is zeroed out. This is explained in Special Condition 2(h) of the tariff.
- When will RES-BCT be available?The program became effective on January 1, 2009. Any Local Government can provide PG&E with no less than 60 days’ notice that it intends to energize a qualifying renewable generator.
PG&E requests that any interested Local Government contact PG&E early in the planning process to discuss the program and ensure that there is a clear understanding of its terms.
- What type of generator qualifies?The generator must be renewable, no larger than 5 MW, and meet the definition of an “eligible renewable energy resource” pursuant to the California Renewables Portfolio Standard Program as is defined in Public Utilities Code Section 399.12 (c).
- What are the system sizing guidelines?In addition to the 5 MW size limit, the renewable generating system must be sized so annual generation is no larger than the annual electricity usage of the Arrangement, which includes both generating and benefitting accounts.
- Can the Generating and Benefitting Accounts be on NEM and RES-BCT?Any renewable generator tied to the generating account can only apply for either net energy metering or RES-BCT, not both.
Identified benefitting accounts also cannot be taking service under any PG&E NEM tariff.
- Can the Local Government also receive an incentive from the California Solar Initiative (CSI) or Self- Generation Incentive Program (SGIP)?Local Governments participating in the RES-BCT program may be eligible for additional incentives, if the additional program allows. However, in the case of CSI and SGIP, the incentive will be based on the electrical load of the generating account and any benefitting accounts that are located at the same Site as the generating account. If there are benefitting accounts located elsewhere, their portion of the renewable generating system will not be included in the incentive calculation. More detail about incentives is provided in both the CSI and SGIP Program Handbooks, depending on the type of renewable generation you are interested in installing.
- Can I sell any export of electricity to a Third Party through RES-BCT?Local Governments cannot sell any electricity exported from their renewable generator. All excess electricity will be credited and used for the benefitting accounts.
- How often can the percentage and benefiting accounts be changed or added?The Local Government can modify the benefiting accounts once a year.
- Are there any upfront and ongoing costs associated with setting up a RES-BCT arrangement?Local Governments participating in the program must cover their share of the one-time and on-going expenses PG&E incurs to implement and administer the special billing required to implement the RESBCT tariff. These costs include billing system programming and maintenance, billing data collection and validation, and administrative labor.
While PG&E reserves the right to seek CPUC approval to change the charges to reflect actual costs, the current tariff charges collected from each Generating Account in the Arrangement are:
Monthly Billing Administrative Charge………………..$30.00 per Generating Account
One time Billing Setup Recovery Charge……………$500.00 per Generating Account
- What type of metering is required and are there any meter costs?The Generating Account must have a PG&E TOU meter capable of separately registering the flow of electricity in two directions, so that PG&E has the data to bill the Generating Account for its usage according to its TOU rate schedule, and calculate the Monthly Bill Credit for the exports to the grid. If the Generating Account’s existing metering is not capable of meeting these requirements, the Local Government must pay for PG&E metering that is able to meet these requirements.
A Benefiting Account taking service on RES-BCT must also have the PG&E meter needed for PG&E to bill the Benefiting Account according to its TOU rate schedule.
- Who pays if the distribution system needs to be upgraded?The Local Government is responsible for any costs or system upgrades necessary to accommodate the interconnection of the generator to PG&E’s distribution grid. (See PUC Section 2830(b)(6).) These costs are not reimbursed.
- Is the RES-BCT interconnection governed by FERC rules or CPUC rules?RES-BCT interconnections will be CPUC jurisdictional under PG&E’s CPUC approved Electric Rule 21.
- Is there any limit to program participation?PG&E’s RES-BCT program is only offered on a first-come-first-served basis until 105.25 MW is reached. This is PG&E’s portion of the 250 MW program goal.
- Who owns the Renewable Energy Credits?Ownership of Renewable Energy Credits is not affected by the RES-BCT arrangement. The ownership of the renewable energy credits stays with the Local Government or Third Party System Owner, depending on the agreed upon arrangement between both parties.
- Will the Power Charge Indifferent (PCIA) have any impact on credits?Yes. The impact is described in the RES-BCT tariff in Special Condition 2(e).
- Do standby charges apply?Depending on the type of generator, Standby charges may apply.
- Is a customer taking service with a CCA or ESP eligible?Please check with your CCA and ESP to see if they will allow you to be on PG&E’s RES-BCT tariff. For CCA and ESP’s, the ESP or CCA is responsible for providing the billing information regarding the applicable generation related bill charges or credits to PG&E on a timely basis.
Andrew Yip: email@example.com