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International Voluntary Renewable Energy Markets (Presentation)

Description: This presentation provides an overview of international voluntary renewable energy markets, with a focus on the United States and Europe. The voluntary renewable energy market is the market in which consumers and institutions purchase renewable energy to match their electricity needs on a voluntary basis. In 2010, the U.S. voluntary market was estimated at 35 terawatt-hours (TWh) compared to 300 TWh in the European market, though key differences exist. On a customer basis, Australia has historically had the largest number of customers, pricing for voluntary certificates remains low, at less than $1 megawatt-hour, though prices depend on technology.
Date: June 1, 2012
Creator: Heeter, J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Renewable Energy Requirements for Future Building Codes: Options for Compliance

Description: As the model energy codes are improved to reach efficiency levels 50 percent greater than current codes, use of on-site renewable energy generation is likely to become a code requirement. This requirement will be needed because traditional mechanisms for code improvement, including envelope, mechanical and lighting, have been pressed to the end of reasonable limits. Research has been conducted to determine the mechanism for implementing this requirement (Kaufman 2011). Kaufmann et al. determined that the most appropriate way to structure an on-site renewable requirement for commercial buildings is to define the requirement in terms of an installed power density per unit of roof area. This provides a mechanism that is suitable for the installation of photovoltaic (PV) systems on future buildings to offset electricity and reduce the total building energy load. Kaufmann et al. suggested that an appropriate maximum for the requirement in the commercial sector would be 4 W/ft{sup 2} of roof area or 0.5 W/ft{sup 2} of conditioned floor area. As with all code requirements, there must be an alternative compliance path for buildings that may not reasonably meet the renewables requirement. This might include conditions like shading (which makes rooftop PV arrays less effective), unusual architecture, undesirable roof pitch, unsuitable building orientation, or other issues. In the short term, alternative compliance paths including high performance mechanical equipment, dramatic envelope changes, or controls changes may be feasible. These options may be less expensive than many renewable systems, which will require careful balance of energy measures when setting the code requirement levels. As the stringency of the code continues to increase however, efficiency trade-offs will be maximized, requiring alternative compliance options to be focused solely on renewable electricity trade-offs or equivalent programs. One alternate compliance path includes purchase of Renewable Energy Credits (RECs). Each REC represents a specified amount ...
Date: September 30, 2011
Creator: Dillon, Heather E.; Antonopoulos, Chrissi A.; Solana, Amy E. & Russo, Bryan J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Green Power Marketing in the United States: A Status Report (Ninth Edition)

Description: Voluntary consumer decisions to purchase electricity supplied by renewable energy sources represent a powerful market support mechanism for renewable energy development. Beginning in the early 1990s, a small number of U.S. utilities began offering ''green power'' options to their customers. Since then, these products have become more prevalent, both from traditional utilities and from marketers operating in states that have introduced competition into their retail electricity markets. Today, more than half of all U.S. consumers have an option to purchase some type of green power product from a retail electricity provider. Currently, more than 600 utilities, or about 20% of utilities nationally, offer green power programs to customers. These programs allow customers to purchase some portion of their power supply as renewable energy--almost always at a higher price--or to contribute funds for the utility to invest in renewable energy development. The term ''green pricing'' is typically used to refer to these utility programs offered in regulated or noncompetitive electricity markets. This report documents green power marketing activities and trends in the United States.
Date: November 1, 2006
Creator: Bird, L. & Swezey, B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Green Power Marketing in the United States: A Status Report (2008 Data)

Description: Voluntary consumer decisions to buy electricity supplied from renewable energy sources represent a powerful market support mechanism for renewable energy development. In the early 1990s, a small number of U.S. utilities began offering 'green power' options to their customers. Since then, these products have become more prevalent, both from traditional utilities and from renewable energy marketers operating in states that have introduced competition into their retail electricity markets or offering renewable energy certificates (RECs) online. Today, more than half of all U.S. electricity customers have an option to purchase some type of green power product directly from a retail electricity provider, while all consumers have the option to purchase RECs. This report documents green power marketing activities and trends in the United States including utility green pricing programs offered in regulated electricity markets; green power marketing activity in competitive electricity markets, as well as green power sold to voluntary purchasers in the form of RECs; and renewable energy sold as greenhouse gas offsets in the United States. These sections are followed by a discussion of key market trends and issues. The final section offers conclusions and observations.
Date: September 1, 2009
Creator: Bird, L.; Kreycik, C. & Friedman, B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Implications of Carbon Regulation for Green Power Markets

Description: This paper examines the potential effects that emerging mandatory carbon markets have for voluntary markets for renewable energy, or green power markets. In an era of carbon regulation, green power markets will continue to play an important role because many consumers may be interested in supporting renewable energy development beyond what is supported through mandates or other types of policy support. The paper examines the extent to which GHG benefits motivate consumers to make voluntary renewable energy purchases and summarizes key issues emerging as a result of these overlapping markets, such as the implications of carbon regulation for renewable energy marketing claims, the demand for and price of renewable energy certificates (RECs), and the use of RECs in multiple markets (disaggregation of attributes). It describes carbon regulation programs under development in the Northeast and California, and how these might affect renewable energy markets in these regions, as well as the potential interaction between voluntary renewable energy markets and voluntary carbon markets, such as the Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX). It also briefly summarizes the experience in the European Union, where carbon is already regulated. Finally, the paper presents policy options for policymakers and regulators to consider in designing carbon policies to enable carbon markets and voluntary renewable energy markets to work together.
Date: April 1, 2007
Creator: Bird, L.; Holt, E. & Carroll, G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Evaluating a Proposed 20% National Renewable Portfolio Standard

Description: This paper provides a preliminary analysis of the impacts of a proposed 20% national renewable portfolio standard (RPS) by 2021, which has been advanced in the U.S. Congress by Senator Jeff Bingaman of New Mexico. The paper was prepared before the America Recovery and Reinvestment Act was signed into law by President Barack Obama on February 17, 2009, and thus does not consider important changes in renewable energy (RE) policy that need to be addressed in follow-on analysis. We use NREL's Regional Energy Deployment System (ReEDS) model to evaluate the impacts of the RPS requirements on the energy sector and consider design issues associated with renewable energy certificate (REC) trading markets.
Date: February 1, 2009
Creator: Logan, J.; Sullivan, P.; Short, W.; Bird, L.; James, T. L. & Shah, M. R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Green Pricing Program Marketing Expenditures: Finding the Right Balance

Description: In practice, it is difficult to determine the optimal amount to spend on marketing and administering a green pricing program. Budgets for marketing and administration of green pricing programs are a function of several factors: the region of the country; the size of the utility service area; the customer base and media markets encompassed within that service area; the point or stage in the lifespan of the program; and certainly, not least, the utility's commitment to and goals for the program. All of these factors vary significantly among programs. This report presents data on programs that have funded both marketing and program administration. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) gathers the data annually from utility green pricing program managers. Programs reporting data to NREL spent a median of 18.8% of program revenues on marketing their programs in 2008 and 16.6% in 2007. The smallest utilities (those with less than 25,000 in their eligible customer base) spent 49% of revenues on marketing, significantly more than the overall median. This report addresses the role of renewable energy credit (REC) marketers and start-up costs--and the role of marketing, generally, in achieving program objectives, including expansion of renewable energy.
Date: September 1, 2009
Creator: Friedman, B. & Miller, M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Innovations in Wind and Solar PV Financing

Description: There is growing national interest in renewable energy development based on the economic, environmental, and security benefits that these resources provide. Historically, greater development of our domestic renewable energy resources has faced a number of hurdles, primarily related to cost, regulation, and financing. With the recent sustained increase in the costs and associated volatility of fossil fuels, the economics of renewable energy technologies have become increasingly attractive to investors, both large and small. As a result, new entrants are investing in renewable energy and new business models are emerging. This study surveys some of the current issues related to wind and solar photovoltaic (PV) energy project financing in the electric power industry, and identifies both barriers to and opportunities for increased investment.
Date: February 1, 2008
Creator: Cory, K.; Coughlin, J.; Jenkin, T.; Pater, J. & Swezey, B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Renewable Portfolio Standards in the States: Balancing Goals and Implementation Strategies

Description: This paper reports on renewable portfolio standards (RPS) and how the RPS rules vary from state to state. This variation presents important challenges to successful implementation. Key issues are discussed in terms of resource availability, solar-specific provisions, and political and regulatory consistency, and their impacts on the ability to finance new renewable energy projects. This report emphasizes the fact that a successful RPS policy must balance a state's goals for fuel diversity, economic development, price effects, and environmental benefits.
Date: December 1, 2007
Creator: Cory, K. S. & Swezey, B. G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Preliminary Examination of the Supply and Demand Balance for Renewable Electricity

Description: In recent years, the demand for renewable electricity has accelerated as a consequence of state and federal policies and the growth of voluntary green power purchase markets, along with the generally improving economics of renewable energy development. This paper reports on a preliminary examination of the supply and demand balance for renewable electricity in the United States, with a focus on renewable energy projects that meet the generally accepted definition of "new" for voluntary market purposes, i.e., projects installed on or after January 1, 1997. After estimating current supply and demand, this paper presents projections of the supply and demand balance out to 2010 and describe a number of key market uncertainties.
Date: October 1, 2007
Creator: Swezey, B.; Aabakken, J. & Bird, L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Comparative Analysis of Three Proposed Federal Renewable Electricity Standards

Description: This paper analyzes potential impacts of proposed national renewable electricity standard (RES) legislation. An RES is a mandate requiring certain electricity retailers to provide a minimum share of their electricity sales from qualifying renewable power generation. The analysis focuses on draft bills introduced individually by Senator Jeff Bingaman and Representative Edward Markey, and jointly by Representative Henry Waxman and Markey. The analysis uses NREL's Regional Energy Deployment System (ReEDS) model to evaluate the impacts of the proposed RES requirements on the U.S. energy sector in four scenarios.
Date: May 1, 2009
Creator: Sullivan, P.; Logan, J.; Bird, L. & Short, W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Power Purchase Agreement Checklist for State and Local Governments

Description: This fact sheet provides information and guidance on the solar photovoltaic (PV) power purchase agreement (PPA), which is a financing mechanism that state and local government entities can use to acquire clean, renewable energy. It addressed the financial, logistical, and legal questions relevant to implementing a PPA, but we do not examine the technical details?those can be discussed later with the developer/contractor. This fact sheet is written to support decision makers in U.S. state and local governments who are aware of solar PPAs and may have a cursory knowledge of their structure but they still require further information before committing to a particular project.
Date: October 1, 2009
Creator: Cory, K.; Canavan, B. & Koenig, R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Solar Photovoltaic Financing: Deployment on Public Property by State and Local Governments

Description: State and local governments have grown increasingly aware of the economic, environmental, and societal benefits of taking a lead role in U.S. implementation of renewable energy, particularly distributed photovoltaic (PV) installations. Recently, solar energy's cost premium has declined as a result of technology improvements and an increase in the cost of traditional energy generation. At the same time, a nationwide public policy focus on carbon-free, renewable energy has created a wide range of financial incentives to lower the costs of deploying PV even further. These changes have led to exponential increases in the availability of capital for solar projects, and tremendous creativity in the development of third-party ownership structures. As significant users of electricity, state and local governments can be an excellent example for solar PV system deployment on a national scale. Many public entities are not only considering deployment on public building rooftops, but also large-scale applications on available public lands. The changing marketplace requires that state and local governments be financially sophisticated to capture as much of the economic potential of a PV system as possible. This report examines ways that state and local governments can optimize the financial structure of deploying solar PV for public uses.
Date: May 1, 2008
Creator: Cory, K.; Coughlin, J. & Coggeshall, C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Considerations for Emerging Markets for Energy Savings Certificates

Description: Early experiences with energy savings certificates (ESCs) have revealed both their merit and the challenges associated with them. In the United States, there has been little activity to date, so any lessons must be drawn from experiences in Italy, the United Kingdom (UK), France, and elsewhere. The staying power of European examples, particularly in Italy, demonstrates that ESCs can help initiate more efficiency projects. Although a robust market for renewable energy certificates (RECs) has emerged in both the voluntary and policy compliance contexts in the United States, ESCs have yet to gain significant traction. This report looks at the opportunity presented by ESCs, the unique challenges they bring, a comparison with RECs that can inform expectations about ESC market development, and the solutions and best practices early ESC market experience have demonstrated. It also examines whether there are real market barriers that have kept ESCs from being adopted and what structural features are necessary to develop effective trading programs.
Date: October 1, 2008
Creator: Friedman, B.; Bird, L. & Barbose, G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department