By - Jon Brown

Modernizing PURPA
September 9-10, 2019 | Denver, CO

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Overview

PURPA, which was enacted in 1978, was originally intended to encourage alternative energy sources during a national energy crisis when oil producers halted deliveries to the U.S. thereby driving up prices. PURPA was intended to foster the development of independent generation via alternative energy sources, thereby reducing the U.S. dependence on foreign oil. In 2005, PURPA was amended under the Energy Policy Act which allowed FERC to exempt utilities from the requirements of PURPA if Qualified Facilities (QFs) have access to wholesale markets.

Today power prices are lower because of the emergence of wholesale market competition, increased renewable generation and low natural gas prices. This increase in renewable generation plays a significant role in advancing sustainability goals and reducing carbon outputs as well as lowering the price of power. There is a growing sense that PURPA needs to change and it would be better to allow states to rely on organized wholesale markets and all-source competitive solicitations to surface the best, most cost-effective projects.

Join us for this event to learn about what’s happening with PURPA and how it is being implemented across the US, as what happens in individual states can influence utilities and developers around the country. The blend of relevant presentations and panel discussions will provide current industry trends, state-of-the-art perspectives and best practices to consider for modernizing PURPA.

Learning Outcomes

  • Analyze avoided costs and the emergence of competitive procurement
  • Discuss why what happens in individual states influences utilities and developers across the country
  • Explore the effect of disaggregation on the 1-mile rule
  • Discuss possible PURPA reform initiatives, and whether PURPA can be better aligned with other state and federal policies
  • Evaluate the greater reliance on RFP processes in several states and how implementation of PURPA can adapt to changing technologies
  • Discuss the evolution in incentive policy for distributed renewable generation

Credits

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EUCI has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).  In obtaining this accreditation, EUCI has demonstrated that it  complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Authorized Provider status, EUCI is authorized to offer IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.

EUCI is authorized by IACET to offer 1.1 CEUs for this event and 0.3 CEUs for the workshop.

 

Requirements for Successful Completion of Program

Participants must sign in/out each day and be in attendance for the entirety of the conference to be eligible for continuing education credit.

Instructional Methods

This program will include PowerPoint presentations and panel discussions

Agenda

Monday, September 9, 2019

12:30 – 1:00 p.m. :: Registration

1:00 – 1:15 p.m. :: Opening Announcements


1:15 – 4:45 p.m. :: Session I: Determining Avoided Cost and the Emergence of Competitive Procurement

Until the last few years, solar and wind energy were so expensive that few utilities had to worry about them matching or besting their avoided cost. Circumstances have changed dramatically, thanks to steady declines in the cost of renewables. As a result, utilities have generally calculated significantly reduced avoided cost prices in recent years. States have continued to grapple with how to compensate QFs for energy and capacity, with some utilities arguing that they should not have to pay for energy or capacity if they do not forecast needing additional energy or capacity in their planning horizon. This session will provide an overview of methodologies used in different states to set avoided cost rates and new challenges with the emergence of competitive procurement including the following topics:

  • The problem of QFs providing excess, unneeded energy/capacity
  • Best practices to ensure a competitive solicitation furthers the goals of PURPA
  • New Challenges in Determination of Avoided Cost, and Emergence of Competitive Procurement: Examples from several states
  • The one-mile rule loophole

Speakers:

Metin Celebi, Principal, The Brattle Group

Jason Brown, Attorney, Montana Consumer Counsel

Jeffrey Hammons, Staff Attorney, Environmental Law & Policy Center


Tuesday, September 10, 2019

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Continental Breakfast


8:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. :: Session II: State RFP Initiatives/Proceedings for QFs

Although PURPA is a federal law, it delegates to individual states the authority to calculate avoided cost and establish other terms for purchases of QF power. In recent years, the number of smaller QFs has increased, mainly as a result of solar PV.  State and federal regulations implementing PURPA have struggled to keep up with the shift from wind to solar and hybrid technologies.  Questions surrounding the eligibility and avoided cost value of storage are no longer hypothetical. This session will discuss the greater reliance on RFP processes in several states and how implementation of PURPA can adapt to changing technologies. Topics include:

  • State RFP initiatives in Xcel’s service territory
  • Creating a level playing field for independent developers of clean energy in various states
  • How the implementation of PURPA can adapt to changing technologies
  • PURPA policies and avoided cost data across the United States

Speakers:

Terri K. Eaton, Senior Director, Federal Regulatory Affairs, Xcel Energy

Rick Gilliam, Program Director – DG Regulatory Policy, Vote Solar

Abby Briggerman, Partner, Holland & Hart

David Sarkisian , Senior Policy Analyst , NC Clean Energy Technology Center

11:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. :: Group Luncheon


12:45 – 3:30 p.m. :: Session III: FERC PURPA Reform Initiatives/Petitions on QF Issues

This year, FERC is expected to consider reforms to its implementation of PURPA. Utilities, state regulators, and developers have all called for various reforms to PURPA and its implementing regulations. Utilities have asserted that the development of competitive wholesale markets and cost declines in renewable generation technologies make PURPA’s mandate outdated. Developers, meanwhile, argue that aspects of PURPA (including the obligation to purchase) have yet to be fully implemented by many states, and that the mandatory purchase obligation is still necessary in many regions. This session will discuss possible PURPA reform initiatives, and whether PURPA can be better aligned with other state and federal policies. Topics include:

  • Is PURPA still a driver of renewable energy?
  • Taking a holistic view PURPA rules and regulations
  • What changes should be considered to improve PURPA policies?
  • Opportunities to reform PURPA as it relates to the interconnection of qualifying facilities

Presenters:

Paul DeCotis, Senior Director, Energy and Utility Practice, West Monroe Partners

Nikolas S. Stoffel, Attorney, Holland & Hart

Jason Brown, Attorney, Montana Consumer Counsel

Peter Stein, Senior Regulatory Attorney, Cyprus Creek Renewables


3:30 – 4:30 p.m. :: Closing Panel Discussion: How to Modernize PURPA

In this panel discussion, a group of experts will bring to bear their years of experience to weigh the opportunities and constraints associated with PURPA — why it may be obsolete and what kind of changes need to take place to modernize PURPA for today’s world.

Panelists:

Paul DeCotis, Senior Director, Energy and Utility Practice, West Monroe Partners

Terri K. Eaton, Senior Director, Federal Regulatory Affairs, Xcel Energy

Jeffrey Hammons, Staff Attorney, Environmental Law & Policy Center

Jason Brown, Attorney, Montana Consumer Counsel

4:30 p.m. :: Symposium Adjourns

Workshop

Battery Storage and Qualified Facilities (QF’s)

Monday, September 9, 2019

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Registration & Continental Breakfast

8:30– 11:45 a.m. :: Workshop Timing

Overview

Is energy storage a qualified facility? That is the question that people are asking about how energy storage fits in with PURPA. Neither PURPA nor FERC’s regulations explicitly mention energy storage as an energy resource type that can make a facility eligible for QF status. However, in the 1990 case Luz Development and Finance Corp., FERC clarified that a storage facility is eligible for QF status if its primary energy source is one of those contemplated by the statute (biomass, renewable resources, geothermal resources or any combination thereof), but FERC has not yet considered how to treat paired storage projects. The addition of batteries violates generation sizing requirements under PURPA. This session will provide added guidance to address the broader scenario of battery storage-plus-renewable projects seeking QF status.

Learning Outcomes

  • Review the history of energy storage in the utility industry
  • Discuss the multiple uses of battery storage
  • Discuss what the future holds for energy storage
  • Explain how energy storage fits in with PURPA
  • Discuss setting contract price and terms for PURPA energy sales agreements
  • Review state action/implementation issues

 

Agenda

Technical Aspects

  • History of storage
  • Review battery storage and other types of storage
  • How battery storage systems work
  • Technical fundamentals
  • Examine best methods for implementing storage
  • The future for energy storage

Legal Issues

  • How energy storage fits in with PURPA
    • What are energy storage projects under federal law?
    • Are storage projects eligible for certain favorable long-term contracts with utilities?
    • Are they subject to less attractive rules and regulations that apply to solar energy?
  • Setting contract price and terms for PURPA energy sales agreements
  • Battery storage facilities as a QF
    • Storage facility be certified a QF if it meets PURPA’s fuel use requirements
  • State Action/Implementation Issues
    • Solar-battery hybrid project in Montana
  • FERC Action
    • Enforcement actions brought by QFs
      • A notice of intent
      • Declaratory order
    • Are co-located battery storage systems considered separate QFs or part of the renewable QF?
    • Should the capacity of co-located battery storage facilities be combined with the capacity of the renewable project to determine QF status?
    • Can a technological intervention be used to limit output below 80 MW such that the renewable facility retains QF status?

Instructors

Peter Richardson, Partner, Richardson Adams PLLC  

Mr. Richardson’s practice focuses exclusively in the field of energy law including the representation of independent power producers, the industrial consumers of investor-owned electric utilities as well as representation of consumer and municipal electric utilities.  Mr. Richardson has assisted developers of independent power projects in obtaining power sales agreements, wheeling agreements as well as financing.  And, as founder, Mr. Richardson developed Grand View Solar One, Idaho’s first and largest solar power plant. His clients include trade associations of independent power producers, large industrial customers and consumer owned electric utilities.  Prior to entering private practice, Mr. Richardson served for four years as staff counsel to the Idaho Public Utilities Commission. Mr. Richardson has appeared before almost every state regulatory commission in the Pacific Northwest and the Intermountain West as well as the Idaho Supreme Court, the U.S. District Court and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on energy related issues.  He has also appeared before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and has practiced extensively before the U.S. Department of Energy’s Bonneville Power Administration.


John Fernandes, Senior Consultant – Emerging Technologies, Customized Energy Solutions (CES)

A recognized thought leader in energy storage policy and market development, John brings over a decade of broad experience in the energy industry with time spent at a public utility, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, and some of the country’s leading energy storage development companies.  John has operated in every US wholesale energy market and has offered expertise in international markets, including Canada, the UK, Mexico, and Australia.  He has helped shaped policy for numerous states as well as the US Department of Energy.  John has an MBA from the University of Delaware, a Master’s in Public Health from Johns Hopkins University, and is a guest lecturer for the University of Colorado at Denver Global Energy Management Program.


Jason Brown, Attorney, Montana Consumer Counsel

Mr. Brown is an attorney for the Montana Consumer Counsel in Helena, where he advocates for the interests of the consuming public in administrative and judicial proceedings, including in PURPA matters.  Prior to joining the Montana Consumer Counsel, Mr. Brown was an attorney for the Montana Public Service Commission for more than six years, where he advised five elected commissioners, drafted administrative orders, and represented the agency before courts and the legislature.  In 2009, he served as the Law Clerk for the 20th Judicial District Court in Lake and Sanders Counties.  He earned law and master’s degrees from the University of Montana and his bachelor’s degree from Tufts University.

Speakers

Abby Briggerman, Partner, Holland & Hart

Jason Brown, Attorney, Montana Consumer Counsel

Metin Celebi, Principal, The Brattle Group

Paul DeCotis, Senior Director, Energy and Utility Practice, West Monroe Partners

Terri K. Eaton, Senior Director, Federal Regulatory Affairs, Xcel Energy

Rick Gilliam, Program Director – DG Regulatory Policy, Vote Solar

Jeffrey Hammons, Staff Attorney, Environmental Law & Policy Center

David Sarkisian , Senior Policy Analyst , NC Clean Energy Technology Center

Peter Stein, Senior Regulatory Attorney, Cyprus Creek Renewables

Nikolas S. Stoffel, Attorney, Holland & Hart

Location

EUCI Office Building Conference Center

4601 DTC Blvd, B-100

Denver CO, 80237

 

Nearby Hotels

Hyatt Regency Denver Tech Center
7800 E Tufts Ave
Denver, CO 80237
Phone: 303-779-1234
0.3 miles away

Hilton Garden Inn Denver Tech Center
7675 E Union Ave
Denver, CO 80237
Phone: 303-770-4200
0.6 miles away

Denver Marriott Tech Center
4900 S Syracuse St
Denver, CO 80237
Phone: 303-779-1100
0.7 miles away

Hyatt Place Denver Tech Center
8300 E. Crescent Parkway
Greenwood Village, CO 80111
Phone: 1-888-492-8847
0.9 miles away

Register

Please Note: Confirmed speakers do not need to register and are encouraged to participate in all sessions of the event. If you are a speaker and have any questions please contact our offices at 1.303.770.8800

EventEarly Bird Before
Friday, August 23, 2019
Standard RateAttendees
Modernizing PURPAUS $ 1195.00 US $ 1395.00

This event has the following workshops:

Battery Storage and Qualified Facilities (QF’s)US $ 495.00
US $ 595.00

Take advantage of these discounts!

  • Attend the Conference and workshop and pay US $ 1,595.00 per attendee (save US $ 95.00 each)

Register 3 Send 4th Free!

Any organization wishing to send multiple attendees to these conferences may send 1 FREE for every 3 delegates registered. Please note that all registrations must be made at the same time to qualify.

Cancellation Policy

Your registration may be transferred to a member of your organization up to 24 hours in advance of the event. Cancellations must be received on or before August 09, 2019 in order to be refunded and will be subject to a US $195.00 processing fee per registrant. No refunds will be made after this date. Cancellations received after this date will create a credit of the tuition (less processing fee) good toward any other EUCI event. This credit will be good for six months from the cancellation date. In the event of non-attendance, all registration fees will be forfeited. In case of conference cancellation, EUCIs liability is limited to refund of the event registration fee only. For more information regarding administrative policies, such as complaints and refunds, please contact our offices at 303-770-8800

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