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MONTPELIER -- The Public Service Department (PSD) announced the kickoff of a comprehensive review of Vermont’s renewable and clean electricity policies and programs. The Department is issuing a Request for Input (“RFI”) to solicit feedback on the process for this review, as well as gather initial input about what is important to Vermonters regarding the state’s supply of electricity. The policy and supporting programs include, but are not limited to:

- Renewable Energy Standard (RES), which began in 2017 and places obligations on distribution utilities to acquire certain amounts and types of renewable electricity each year based on their retail sales;

- Standard Offer, which began in 2009 and encourages deployment of small-scale (up to 2.2 MW) renewable projects through a centralized procurement process;

- Net Metering, which began in 1999 and provides incentives for customers to self-generate from small-scale power resources (up to 500 kW) and net this generation against their electric bill, either directly or as a monetary credit.

The review process will implement a core recommendation of the Comprehensive Energy Plan, published in January of 2022, which calls for a comprehensive consideration of adjustments to Vermont’s Renewable Energy Standard, as well as related renewable energy programs – including moving toward 100 percent renewable or carbon-free electricity. This review remains consistent with recommendations contained in the Climate Action Plan as well.

“This overarching review of our electricity supply strategies with an eye toward integration is overdue. Many of these strategies were conceived at different points in time, on a stand-alone basis. As a result, the implementation has frequently occurred and evolved in silos over the last several years.” said June E. Tierney, Commissioner of the Public Service Department. “The time is ripe for considering updates and revisions to secure a good fit with our progress to date and the momentum toward achieving the progress that lies ahead. This will best ensure that Vermont is poised to achieve its energy vision – an electric supply that is renewable and reliable, with costs kept as low as practicable.”

The RFI seeks to gather input on several key topics related to this effort including: the engagement effort for the process, core decision-making criteria to consider, and initial issues for consideration related to renewable electricity in Vermont. TJ Poor, the PSD’s Director of Planning, noted that “Vermont has learned from the Comprehensive Energy Plan and Climate Action Plan engagement processes. We know we can do better. This RFI is just the start – we recognize that this is just one tool for outreach. We expect future online and in-person opportunities for engagement, and look forward to working with partners to identify and reach a broad cross-section of Vermont”

The RFI and supporting documents can be downloaded from the Public Service Department website at www.publicservice.vermont.gov/renewable_energy. Please send comments by Aug. 5 to the PSD via email at PSD-REPrograms@vermont.gov or by US Mail addressed to Public Service Department, Attn: Renewable Policy and Program Comments, 112 State Street, Montpelier, VT 05620-2601.


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