Rhode Island [RenewableEnergyWorld.com] Rhode Island’s nonprofit green power provider, People’s Power & Light (PP&L), announced that it is seeking long-term contract proposals from wind farm developers who are responding to the state’s Request for Proposals (RFP) to build a wind farm off the coast of Rhode Island.
Currently customers of PP&L’s New England GreenStart voluntarily pay for 100% of their electricity to come from green power. According to the company, over the past five years, PP&L has built the largest market share in the GreenUp program, which allows National Grid customers (National Grid supplies energy to Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island) to choose green power on their electric bill. Meanwhile, the mandatory market (utilities’ required purchases) has steadily ramped up a few percentage points each year.
The sparse availability of new green power has slowed the growth of the voluntary market. So PP&L is interested in more substantial projects like the proposed wind farm. Specifically, PP&L seeks a subcontract with the option to purchase Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) from the designated developer as long as it Environmental Impact Statement demonstrates that the environmental benefits outweigh anticipated negative impacts.
Omay Elphick, Deputy Director, said, “We think that some reasonable portion of this project, particularly in its early years, should be allocated to the voluntary market so that Rhode Islanders can support clean energy development with 100% of their electricity consumption. With our market-priced long-term contracts, PP&L is a natural bridge between clean energy developers and Rhode Islanders who want to support clean energy with their utility dollars.”