Green Tariff/Shared Renewables Program (GTSR)

Introduction/Background

Senate Bill (SB) 43 enacted the Green Tariff Shared Renewables (GTSR) Program.  The GTSR Program is intended to (1) expand access "to all eligible renewable energy resources to all ratepayers who are currently unable to access the benefits of onsite generation," and (2) "create a mechanism whereby institutional customers…commercial customers and groups of individuals . . . can meet their needs with electrical generation from eligible renewable energy resources."

The statute further provides that the GTSR Program should "provide support for enhanced community renewables programs to facilitate development of eligible renewable resource projects located close to the source of demand."  By statue, the costs of GTSR may not be borne by customers who did not elect GTSR service.

The GTSR program will ensure that those utility customers not participating in GTSR will not bear any of the costs of GTSR.

Program Description

The GTSR program is designed to allow PG&E, SCE and SDG&E customers to receive 50% - 100% of their electricity demand from solar generation. The program has a capped enrollment of 600 megawatts (MW) statewide.

100MW of the energy procured through GTSR must be sited in areas identified by the CalEnviroScreen tool as being one of the 20% most disadvantaged census tracts in each IOU’s service territory:  is known as the Environmental Justice reservation these projects must be between 500kW and 1MW in size.  Other GTSR projects may be up to 20MW in size.  In addition, one hundred of the total 600MW is reserved for residential customers, and 20 MW is reserved for the City of Davis.

The GTSR program has two components: the “Green Tariff” component and the “Enhanced Community Renewables” component. Under the Green Tariff, a customer may pay the difference between their current generation charge and a charge that reflects the cost of procuring 50% to 100% solar generation for their electricity needs. Under Enhanced Community Renewables, a customer agrees to purchase a share of a local solar project directly from a solar developer, and in exchange will receive a credit from their utility for the customer’s avoided generation procurement and for their share of the benefit of the solar development to the utility. Neither of these program sub-components are dedicated a certain amount of the overall 600MW cap.

Key CPUC Decisions

In January, 2015, the CPUC adopted a Decision beginning the process of GTSR implementation. This Decision (D.15-01-051) required the utilities to submit their plans for GTSR implementation by May, 2015. The implementation plan includes three phases: Phase I – Green Tariff options for SDG&E and PG&E, Phase II – Green Tariff options for SCE, and Phase III – Enhanced Community Renewables program requirements.  The Commission subsequently issued Resolution 4734-E which clarified some implementation issues raised in the IOU's advice letters.

In May 2016, the CPUC adopted D.16-05-006 that addressed participation of ECR projects in the Renewable Auction Mechanism. In addition, the decision provided guidance on a number of outstanding issues including the reporting of GHG claims, the securities opinion requirement, and forecasting of rate elements, including bill charges and credits.

In July 2017, the CPUC adopted D.17-07-007, which grants the joint Petition for Modification of D.15-01-051, which replaces the AmLaw 100 Securities Option Requirement with a three-part standard which requires that securities opinions come from a lawyer or firm with 1) eight years of experience in securities law, 2) be currently licensed by the California Bar, and 3) carry a minimum of $10 million in professional liability coverage.  These requirements were based on an all-party workshop hosted by the CPUC on October 13, 2016.

Program Status

Per Commission Decision 15-01-051, the three investor-owned utilities are required to file monthly and annual reports, which are available on the Commission's Docket Card for this proceeding.

As of June 2017, the following MW have enrolled in GTSR programs

Annual Reports:  PG&E, SCE, SDG&E

How Much Does GTSR Cost?
 The GTSR premium is determined by a combination of what the customer-class (i.e Residential, small /medium/large commercial, agricultural, etc.) the IOUs’s costs, and the year the customer elects GTSR service.  By statute, the costs for GTSR may not be shifted onto other, non-participating ratepayers.

 In general, the Green Tariff Shared Renewable rate consists of four general cost components:

1.  Solar Charge/Renewable Power Rate: The cost of renewable generation purchased:

a.    GT: As a pass-through from the IOU
b.    ECR: Always zero on the IOU bill, since the customer is paying the renewables developer directly.

2.  Program Charge: Charges are set to (1) fund the administration and marketing costs associated with the program, and (2) to ensure that non-participating customers do not fund the program. 

3.  Class Average Generation Credit: The customer taking service on Green Tariff will receive a credit equal to the average generation rate for the Otherwise Applicable Class of service; i.e., residential, small commercial, agricultural, streetlight.  The average generation credit is provided to recognize that the customer's energy supply is now being provided by a renewable resource and displaces the charges for the generation portfolio associated with the Otherwise Applicable Tariff.  Therefore, this charge differs by customer class, since different customer classes have different usage profiles.  SCE customers on the Green Tariff receive a Class Average Generation Credit, along with the Time-of-Delivery Adjustments, as credits against the Solar Charge/Renewable Power Rate and Program Charge.

4Power Charge Indifference Adjustment (PCIA): The PCIA is a charge that was developed to address the potential for cost shifting when bundled customers switch to unbundled direct access service, and is used as a proxy on which to base the GTSR customer indifference amount.  The PCIA charge varies according to when the customer left bundled IOU service.  In the table below, the PCIA and CTC are combined for SCE.

Below is an illustrative table of the GTSR charges broken down by IOU and rate-component.  Note that each IOU groups their charges slightly differently.  For full details, please click on the IOU's applicable tariff sheet or program page.

 

[1] Excludes Time of Delivery (TOD) Adjustment, which is specific to the Community Renewables facility contracted.  
[2] Includes proxy Resource Adequacy (RA) Charge from Schedule GTSR - Green Rate (GR).  For CR customers, actual RA Charge
 is specific to the contracted CR facility.
[3] Indifference Adjustment derived as followed:  Ongoing Competition Transition Charge (CTC), plus Vintaged Power Charge
Indifference Adjustment (PCIA) (2017 Vintage Non-Continuous).  Indifference Adjustment vary by the year that customers first
take service under Schedule GTSR.

Program and Marketing Names

Each IOU has rebranded and renamed their respective GTSR programs.  Each name, as well as relevant internet link to the utility's GTSR website is included in the table below.  

Tariff

Program Page and Marketing Name

PG&E

 

Green Tariff Residential

Solar Choice

Green Tariff Small Business

Solar Choice

Enhanced Community Renewables Residential

Regional Renewable Choice

Enhanced Community Renewables Small Business

Regional Renewable Choice

SCE

Green Tariff Residential

Green Rate

Green Tariff Small Business

Green Rate

Enhanced Community Renewables Residential

Community Renewables

Enhanced Community Renewables Small Business

Community Renewables

SDG&E

Green Tariff Residential

EcoChoice

Green Tariff Small Business.

EcoChoice

Enhanced Community Renewables Residential

EcoShare

Enhanced Community Renewables Small Business

EcoShare

 

 

Relevant Legislation

  • SB 43 (September 2013) Enacted the GTSR Program

  • SB 793 (October 2015) Removed the program's 2019 sunset date and permits participating customers to be provided with a nonbinding estimate of reasonably anticipated bill credits and bill charges for a period of up to 20 years.
 

Contacts

All submitted documents can be found on this proceeding's Docket Card Page for A.12-04-020.

To join this or any other proceeding's service list, please visit our Service List page.  For more information on how you can participate in this proceeding, please visit the Commission's Public Advisor page.

For questions about the GTSR program, please contact Cherie Chan at cherie.chan@cpuc.ca.gov or (415) 703-1779.


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