A Solar Photovoltaic Incentive Policy We Can Believe In.
Which US state will enact the first Feed-in Tariff (FiT)?
Triangulate between Orlando, Jacksonville, and Tallahassee to find Gainesville, Florida USA. Photovoltaic advocates won’t need fancy geometry to locate Gainesville after “Commission gives its approval to feed-in tariff for solar power” by Megan Rolland for The Gainesville Sun.
gave unanimous approval last night to adopt a solar photovoltaic feed-in-tariff— the first of its kind in the nation.
Pending expected Florida Public Service commission approval, GRU customers can sign up for the feed-in-tariff as of March 1. Participants signing up during the first two years of the program will be guaranteed a fixed rate of $0.32 per kilowatt hour for 20 years. GRU estimates that investors will see a 5-percent return on investment for large-scale projects.
As the About GRU section of the website explains:
GRU is a multi-service utility owned by the City of Gainesville and is the 5th largest municipal electric utility in Florida.
GRU Assistant General Manager Ed Regan joined a Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA) organized fact finding mission in Germany last summer to learn about solar grid integration and accelerating solar adoption with Feed-in Tariffs. Please see the SEPA “Fact Finding Mission to Germany for Utility Decision Makers – Final Report”.
As stated in the City of Gainesville ORDINANCE NO. 080566, the FiT has an annual cap:
The general manager or his/her designee may cease to offer new contracts after a total of 4 MW of solar photovoltaic distributed generation has been connected to the utility system per year, or as safety and reliability of the utility system require, subject to City Commission policy review.
Gainesville’s Solar Feed-in Tariff Program Summary
- Gainesville Regional Utilities
Solar Feed In Tariff Schedule
Effective March 1, 2009
- City of Gainesville ORDINANCE NO. 080566
- Interconnection Agreement
- Energy Purchase Agreement
- GRU FIT Overview
The progressive action by the City of Gainesville was preceded by the Florida Alliance for Renewable Energy (FARE) conference “Effective Renewable Energy Policies” on February 3, 2009. Speakers and sponsors at the conference included a European Photovoltaic Industry Association (EPIA) delegation, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE), Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA), Florida Municipal Electric Association (FMEA), MMA Renewable Ventures, Dexia Finance, the World Future Council, the Alliance for Renewable Energy (ARE), Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), Mayor Hanrahan of Gainesville, Mayor Marks of Tallahassee and Florida Senator Lee Constantine. These are their respective Effective Renewable Energy Policies Presentations.
The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) was absent from the presenters. Perhaps the SEIA was too busy playing “THE INFLUENCE GAME: Lobbyists work stimulus to end” by Alan Fram with The Associated Press to be troubled with a best practice solar photovoltaic incentive policy?
FiT for California?
Since I posted 1st Solar Symposium: Feed-in Tariff for California First, California has been examining the “existing renewable feed-in tariff of 1.5 MW.” Paul Gipe at Wind-Works.org has the scoop on an upcoming workshop, “California PUC to Hold Workshop on Feed-in Tariffs” or scroll down the California Public Utilities Commission Daily Calendar:
Public Workshop Notice – Renewable Feed-in Tariffs (Revised as of 1/26/09)
February 10, 2009
9:30 am – 4:30 pm
California Public Utilities Commission
505 Van Ness Avenue
San Francisco, California
Mr. Gipe also presented on behalf of the Wind-Works.org and the Alliance for Renewable Energy at the above FARE conference.
Is there any chance EPIA would consider setting up the North Atlantic Photovoltaic Industry Association and opening a branch office in Washington, DC? The SEIA is in denial regarding Feed-in Tariffs and still doesn’t even mention them on their website as I noted almost a year ago in Feed-in Tariffs: Solar FiT for the USA.