MEEKER I White River Electric Association applauds the Colorado House of Representatives’ passage of Senate Bill 15-046.
On March 30, the House voted 65-0 in favor of the bill. The bill will now go to Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) for his signature.
SB 15-046 addresses the “retail distributed generation (DG)” requirement contained in SB 13-252, which increased renewable resource requirement for electric co-ops two years ago. SB 13-252 requires electric co-ops to derive at least 0.5 percent of their sales from renewable energy sources located on the customer side of the electric meter by 2020.
The change in SB 15-046 allows electric cooperatives to exclude industrial sales from the total sales subject to the 0.5 percent retail DG requirement. In addition, SB 15-046 allows electric co-ops to count the output from community solar gardens as retail DG.
These provisions in the bill put rural electric cooperatives on equal footing with investor-owned utilities.
White River Electric Association, along with CREA, the trade association for Colorado’s 22 electric cooperatives, worked for months to promote these practical additions to SB 13-252.
WREA General Manager Alan Michalewicz said, “This is a big win for the reasonable and responsible inclusion of integrated renewable energy resources into our system.”
Michalewicz went on to state, “WREA supports renewable energy resources that do not create an undue burden on our rate base. It is great to see the Colorado General Assembly coming together to amend SB 13-252 for the benefit of renewable energy and our membership.”