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GreenBiz: 6 essential elements of successful utility renewable programs

Posted by Caitlin Marquis on Jul 26, 2018
In this GreenBiz article AEE's Caitlin Marquis, manager of policy at the Advanced Energy Buyers Group looks at corporate demand for energy and how companies should go about purchasing wholesale energy. Link to the full article here. Excerpts below: 
 

Corporate demand for renewable energy is no longer a fringe issue talked about on the sidelines of the clean energy industry — it is a mainstream phenomenon, and growing quickly.

As of 2016, 71 companies out of the Fortune 100 had set a clean energy or sustainability target, and these companies aren’t just talking the talk. By mid-2018, corporate buyers had signed contracts for over 11 gigawatts (GW) of projects since 2014, and put in hundreds of installations onsite.

What’s available today? Utility renewable energy offerings start with renewable energy certificate (REC) purchase programs. These programs charge customers a set price per kilowatt-hour (kWh) in exchange for matching a portion of the customer’s use with RECs, which represent the renewable attributes separate from the electricity produced. They’re a valuable tool for residential and small business customers but are not well suited to the large C&I crowd, which is seeking greater value, clearer impact and the opportunity to hedge energy costs and even save money, in exchange for making a longer commitment and accepting more complexity or risk.

 So, what does success look like? At a high level, the goal is the same as in the school cafeteria: affordable, appealing and varied options for customers to choose from. The team that supports Advanced Energy Economy’s Advanced Energy Buyers Group took a look at what’s worked and what hasn’t across the country. It all boils down to six essential elements of a successful utility renewable energy offering.
 
Link to the full GB article here.

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