Connecticut's Process to For Feelgood Wind Power at Mainers' Expense
The following, which was found at the website of Connecticut's Department of Energy & Environmental Protection. (DEEP), discusses their process for soliciting bids from wind power generators, as part of their three state effort with Mass and RI.
"DEEP will ultimately review the responses to all three RFPs, compare the projects against each other, and identify the best mix of resources to address the region’s reliability challenge, meet clean energy goals, and make electricity more affordable for Connecticut ratepayers."
Should anyone wish to let Connecticut know that their feelgood scheme is destroying the lives of Mainers, please consider sending a letter to:
Deputy Commissioner – Energy
Department of Energy & Environmental Protection
79 Elm Street
Hartford, CT 06106-5127
Perhaps if they get some letters, it will give them something to think about. The redacted bids from the wind generators paint a picture of tremendous public support in Maine.
Affordable and Reliable Electricity Procurement
Due to limitations in the design of our deregulated electricity market, gas fired power plants—which now account for more than half of the region’s electricity mix—are not contracting for the gas pipeline capacity needed to run reliably in the winter. As a result, the price of natural gas delivered into New England has increased sharply during cold winter months, and this in turn is increasing the risk of blackouts and driving up electricity generation prices and carbon emissions in Connecticut and across the region.
In December 2013, the Governors of the six New England states committed to an energy init...
” in the regional energy mix in a way that reduces energy costs, increases economic development, and improves air quality. In April 2015, the Governors of the New England states re-committed to coordinating an...
. In March 2015, DEEP released its 2014 Integrated Resources Plan
for Connecticut (2014 IRP), which is a biennial plan that assesses the state’s future electric needs and plans to meet those needs with both demand-side resources and supply-side resources. The 2014 IRP recommended competitive procurement open to a broad range of resources—including gas infrastructure, clean energy generation, and measures that reduce electricity demand—to relieve the region’s natural gas infrastructure constraints, ultimately improving winter reliability and reducing generation costs.
In June 2015, the Connecticut General Assembly passed and Governor Malloy signed into law Public Act 15-107
, An Act Concerning Affordable and Reliable Energy, which authorizes the Commissioner of DEEP, in consultation with the state’s procurement manager, the Office of Consumer Counsel, and the Attorney General, to issue multiple solicitations—either alone or in coordination with other New England states—for long-term contracts from providers of resources that can provide Connecticut’s reasonable share of the investments New England needs to address the gas infrastructure challenge.
The Act establishes three categories of resources eligible to compete in solicitations issued pursuant to Sections 1(b), (c), and (d) of the Act, including passive demand response measures, Class I renewable energy sources, Class III sources, verifiable large-scale hydropower, interstate natural gas transportation capacity, liquefied natural gas, liquefied natural gas storage, and natural gas storage. Additionally, the Act gives DEEP discretion to solicit proposals for energy storage systems and Class I renewable energy sources paired with Class II renewable energy sources or existing hydropower.
On August 31, 2015, DEEP initiated three proceedings to implement the Act and issued a notice and request for comment outlining the sequence of implementation and evaluation process for the solicitations. DEEP accepted public comment on this notice through September 30, 2015.
On November 12, 2015, DEEP released a final Request for Proposals seeking bids for Class I renewable energy sources that are 20 MW or more and large-scale hydropower under Section 1(c) of the Act and Sections 6 and 7 of Public Act 13-303. A bidders conference was held on December 3, 2015. Bids were accepted under this solicitation until January 28, 2016. Public versions of the bids submitted are availableonline.
On December 22, 2015, DEEP released a draft Request for Proposals for public comment seeking bids for Class I renewable energy sources and Class III energy sources between 2 MW and 20 MW, energy efficiency, and energy storage systems under Section 1(b) of the Act. DEEP accepted public comment on the draft through January 14, 2016. On March 9, 2016, DEEP released the final Request for Proposals and is accepting proposals through May 4, 2016. A Bidders’ Conference will be held on March 24, 2016.
Also on March 9, 2016, DEEP released a draft Request for Proposals for public comment seeking bids for natural gas resources under Section 1(d) of the Act. DEEP is accepting public comment on this draft through March 29, 2016.
February 2, 2016
DEEP Reports Strong Response to Three-State Clean Energy RFP
Number and scope of bids are encouraging
Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) says it received more than 30 project proposals from bidders responding to a historic three-state Request for Proposals (RFP) for new clean energy projects that can help the region reduce its reliance on natural gas infrastructure and improve the reliability and affordability of New England’s electric system – while cutting carbon pollution from the power sector and helping the state stay on track to meet its renewable energy goals.
Bidders offered projects ranging from 20 MW to more than 400 MW to be located in Connecticut, Maine, Vermont, New York and eastern Canada. There were eight bids for Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) for new wind projects; 18 bids for PPAs for new solar projects; one bid for a PPA for fuel cells; and six bids for various combinations of wind, hydro, solar, energy storage, and transmission. Projects including proposals for transmission lines in their bids reflected the need for infrastructure to tap the region’s clean energy potential.
“We’re pleased with the response to this historic RFP, based on our initial look at the number of responses, and the creativity and ambition of the projects proposed,” said DEEP Commissioner Robert Klee. “This is good news for Connecticut’s ratepayers and signals the very real potential for us to deliver a cheaper, cleaner, and more reliable energy future for residents and businesses of our state.”
Bids in response to the RFP were due Thursday, January 28. Public versions of all bids received are posted at www.cleanenergyrfp.com, along with other information about the Clean Energy RFP. Developers were invited to submit multiple bids reflecting different project configurations. The bids will now undergo a rigorous evaluation based on their viability, bid price and other project benefits. The evaluation process will take several months, with a final selection of projects expected in the second half of 2016.
“Our policy is to use open, competitive procurements to get the best deals for our ratepayers,” said DEEP Deputy Commissioner Katie Dykes. “In this case, we were pleased to be able to join with our sister states — Massachusetts and Rhode Island —to pool our buying power and open the possibility of attracting bids from large-scale projects that one state might not be able to procure on its own. It appears that bidders indeed sharpened their pencils in response to this unique opportunity, and submitted very competitive bids.”
The Commissioner of DEEP will make the final decision on selection of any project for Connecticut, after consulting with the Connecticut Attorney General, Consumer Counsel, and Procurement Manager. No project may be selected unless its benefits exceed the costs to Connecticut ratepayers. Contracts awarded under this RFP will be subject to review and approval by the Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority.
DEEP’s “All The Above” Approach to Addressing Regional Gas Infrastructure Needs
DEEP is participating in the Clean Energy RFP with authority provided under CT Public Act 13-303, which authorized long-term contracting for renewables and large-scale hydropower, and a more recent statute, Public Act 15-107, which authorizes the Department to seek proposals from a broad range of resources—including renewables, hydropower, and energy storage—that can help to address energy infrastructure constraints in New England. Under the two Public Acts, DEEP has the authority to select projects to meet up to 15% of the state’s energy demand.
A lack of natural gas pipeline capacity to serve electric power plants in the region is threatening the reliability and affordability of power in New England. DEEP has recognized that a variety of resources offer the potential to resolve this problem, including gas pipelines, gas storage, and liquefied natural gas; clean energy generation; energy storage; and energy efficiency.
Additional Procurement RFPs to Follow
Throughout 2016, DEEP will be seeking proposals from all of these resources through three separate RFPs, and the resulting proposals will be compared against each other to identify the best mix of resources to address the region’s reliability challenge, meet clean energy goals, and save money for Connecticut ratepayers.
- The Clean Energy RFP is the first of these RFPs.
- DEEP expects to issue a final RFP for small-scale renewables (2-20 MW), energy efficiency, and energy storage in early February.
- A draft RFP for natural gas resources will also be released in early February for public review and comment.
View information here on these other procurements.
March 10, 2016
DEEP Announces Next Steps on RFPs for
Clean Energy Resources and Natural Gas
Process designed to advance state’s energy and environmental goals and benefit Connecticut’s families and businesses
Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) has taken a major next step forward in securing affordable and reliable electricity for the families and businesses of our state with the release of a Final Request for Proposals (RFP) for smaller scale – between 2 MW and 20 MW - clean energy resources and a Draft RFP for cost-effective natural gas resources to help support electric generation.
These RFPs are being coordinated with a previous RFP seeking large-scale clean energy projects – 20 MW to 400 MW. DEEP is currently reviewing 30 responses to that RFP that ranged from wind, solar, and fuel cells, with some projects also offering transmission and energy storage features.
DEEP will ultimately review the responses to all three RFPs, compare the projects against each other, and identify the best mix of resources to address the region’s reliability challenge, meet clean energy goals, and make electricity more affordable for Connecticut ratepayers.
“Moving this RFP process forward bring us closer to full implementation of Governor Malloy’s vision for a cheaper, cleaner and more reliable energy future for Connecticut’s electric ratepayers,” said DEEP Deputy Commissioner Katie Dykes. “Achieving these energy goals will bring more affordable power to our families and businesses, support our clean energy goals, and help ensure a flow of power we can count on to meet the needs of our residents and our economy.”
RFP for Small Scale Clean Energy
The RFP seeks proposals for smaller scale clean energy resources, between 2 MW and 20 MW, including, but not limited to, solar, wind and hydro generation, and combined heat and power facilities. It is also open to energy storage and energy efficiency demand side resources that are larger in scale. Bidders must submit proposals by early May. The RFP and information on scheduled events pertaining to the RFP can be found on DEEP’s web site at DEEP Energy Filings webpage.
Draft Natural Gas Resources RFP
The draft RFP for cost-effective natural gas resources is designed to attract projects that could help increase the reliability of electric service, especially in winter months when the region has experienced inadequate supplies of natural gas capacity for gas-fired power plants. In previous winters, this has caused significant constraints in our electric and natural gas systems, leading to higher electric and natural gas prices for Connecticut’s families and businesses, and threats to the reliability of the grid.
The intent of this RFP is to procure natural gas resources that will be utilized by natural gas generators in the New England region to improve the affordability and reliability of regional electric supply. To ensure that the Connecticut’s electric ratepayers are offered the most cost-effective fuel resources for their electric needs, DEEP will evaluate a variety of natural gas resources, which include natural gas pipeline capacity, liquefied natural gas (“LNG”), and natural gas storage.
Proposals to employ gas resources submitted as a result of this RFP will have to compete with the clean energy bids from the other RFPs to determine the best mix of resources to advance the goals of cheaper, cleaner, and more reliable energy.
The draft RFP and Notice for Written Comments can be seen on the DEEP Energy Filings webpage. Written comments must be submitted to DEEP by March 29, 2016. DEEP will review submitted comments for inclusion in the Final RFP which will potentially be released later this spring.