Carcieri Signs Renewable Energy Legislation

Gov. Donald L. Carcieri, R-R.I., formally signed into law H.8083 Sub A & S.2819 Sub A, legislation that clarifies the General Assembly's original intent to encourage and promote renewable energy in Rhode Island through a demonstration-sized offshore wind project.

‘We are setting a new course for renewable energy which will reduce our reliance on foreign oil, protect our environment and grow a new, green industry which will provide thousands of good-paying jobs for our citizens in the years to come,’ Carcieri says.

The legislation requires that a new power purchase agreement (PPA) between National Grid and Deepwater Wind be filed with the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) with a decision rendered within 45 days and includes public comment. In addition, the legislation requires the Rhode Island Economic Development Corp. and the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management to offer testimony before the PUC on the economic development and environmental benefits of the project.

The legislation also mandates that the new PPA contain an ‘open book’ approach that requires Deepwater Wind to disclose and the Division of Public Utilities to verify, the construction and development costs of the project. Under this section of the legislation, ratepayers will benefit from any capital cost savings achieved during the development and construction of the demonstration project in the form of a lower power price.

The legislation also caps the price of the power to the price stated in the PPA previously filed with the PUC. However, that price will be reduced commensurate with any savings achieved in the development of the project.

SOURCE: Office Gov. Donald L. Carcieri

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