HARTFORD (March 18, 2013) – The Renewable Energy and Efficiency Business Association, Inc. (REEBA) opposes Proposed Substitute Bill 1138, An Act Concerning Connecticut’s Clean Energy Goals, voicing strong objection to its wholesale legislative changes to the state’s renewable portfolio standard program (RPS).
“Put simply, this bill proposes unprecedented changes to Connecticut’s renewable portfolio standard and has the potential to obstruct, considerably, the development of renewable energy in the state,” said Paul R, Michaud, REEBA Executive Director and Founder.
The purpose of this bill is to amend Connecticut’s RPS strategies based on the findings of a Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) RPS study that was to have been completed by the end of 2012. However, Proposed Substitute Bill 1138 was drafted and released March 15th, prior to the completion and release of the RPS study results and also prior to any public commentary.
“Among other reasons, REEBA stands in opposition to this legislation based on DEEP’s complete lack of transparency and failure to ensure an open dialogue on this critical energy matter,” stated Mr. Michaud. “We need to slow this process down in order to secure adequate public input as these measures will undoubtedly have a huge financial impact to the renewable companies we have worked to attract to our state.”
Other measures of the bill REEBA sites as problematic include the creation of a new RPS class that would include large utility-owned Canadian hydropower and limitations on a renewable facility’s ability to sell renewable energy credits (RECs) to other states while simultaneously reducing or excluding the eligibility of biomass, geothermal, and other renewable energy technologies.
Mr. Michaud commented, “Further, this bill will stifle the growth potential of the state’s renewable energy industry by providing economic incentives for well-established, utility-owned Canadian hydropower. The state should, instead, be directing monies toward Connecticut’s fledgling renewable energy community to foster an industry right here in our own state.
“Language within this bill also directly, and likely unconstitutionally, discriminates against interstate commerce while also threatening current renewable energy facilities that choose to sell RECs to other states,” Michaud said.
“This type of legislation severely limits Connecticut’s RPS standards and I encourage members of the committee to reject the administration’s bill.”
The Energy and Technology Committee’s deadline for reporting out a bill is Thursday, March 28th.
REEBA is a trade association of renewable energy and efficiency businesses with over 100 members. REEBA’s mission is to promote the sustainable deployment of renewable energy, demand-side-management, and energy efficiency in Connecticut. www.reeba.org