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Renewable Energy Standard

30 V.S.A. § 8002-8005 establish a renewable energy standard (RES) that Vermont electric distribution utilities (DUs) are required to meet. Under the RES, Vermont’s DUs must procure a defined percentage of their total retail electric sales from renewable energy. The requirements of the RES are broken into three categories, or tiers, as follows:

Tier I

Tier I requires that Vermont DUs procure a defined percentage of their retail electric sales from any source of renewable energy. Under Tier I, this defined percentage starts at 55% in 2017, the first year the RES is in effect, and increases by 4% every three years, eventually reaching 75% in 2032. 

Tier II

Tier II requires that Vermont DUs procure a defined percentage of their retail electric sales from new distributed renewable generation. For purposes of the RES, distributed renewable generation is defined as electric generation facilities that have a plant capacity of 5 MW or less and are directly connected to a DUs subtransmission or distribution system, or have been identified in an approved plan to defer transmission upgrades, or net-metering systems, provided the DU owns the environmental attributes associated with the system. In order to qualify as new under the RES, facilities must have commenced operation after June 30, 2015. DUs are required to procure 1% of their annual retail sales from Tier II-eligible facilities starting in 2017, increasing by three-fifths of a percent each year until reaching 10% in 2032. 

Tier III

Tier III requires that DUs either procure additional new distributed renewable energy consistent with the requirements of Tier II, above, or acquire fossil-fuel savings through energy transformation projects. Energy transformation projects are those that reduce the fossil-fuel consumption of a DU’s customers and the greenhouse gas emissions associated with that consumption. Under Tier III, DUs must procure either the amount of distributed renewable energy or fossil-fuel savings equivalent to 2% of their annual retail sales in 2017, increasing by two-thirds of a percent each year until reaching 12% in 2032. 

RES Implementation and Tiers I and II Qualification Registration Form

The Commission implements the Renewable Energy Standard using Rule 4.400, the Renewable Energy Standard Rule.

Facilities seeking to be qualified under Tiers I or II of the Renewable Energy Standard may seek a statement of qualification using this Registration Form. For more about qualifying as a Tier I or II facility, see Section 4.406 of Rule 4.400.