Dominion Energy Virginia has filed its first set of plans under the Grid Transformation & Security Act (GTSA). Notably, the company is committing to have 3 GW of new solar and wind under development or in operation by the beginning of 2022.
The landmark legislation, signed by Gov. Ralph Northam, became effective July 1 and provides a roadmap for Virginia’s energy future.
“Thanks to the Grid Transformation & Security Act, Dominion Energy plans to develop a system that meets the increasingly complex demands and expectations of our customers,” says Ed Baine, senior vice president of power delivery. “And we are doing it with more renewable energy.”
The law is designed to pave the way for expanded investments in renewable energy, smart grid technology, a stronger and more secure grid, and energy efficiency programs, all while keeping rates affordable. It also provides bill credits and rate reductions for customers and expands the EnergyShare program to help Virginia’s most vulnerable citizens.
In its regulatory filing, Dominion asked the State Corporation Commission (SCC) to approve the programs, investments and costs included in the first three years of a 10-year grid transformation program. The company will update the plan and request approval of additional programs and spending in later filings with the SCC.
The planned 3 GW of solar and wind projects will be a combination of assets developed and procured by the company. In a related filing with the SCC, Dominion Energy seeks to specifically add 240 MW of solar energy in Virginia. The company is also working this summer to gather input from stakeholders before announcing the next phase in its solar strategy.
Later this summer, the company will also seek SCC approval for its proposed Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind project. The 12 MW facility would be located in a federal lease area about 27 miles off the coast of Virginia Beach. The two-turbine test project is being developed through a partnership with Ørsted.
The GTSA also directs Dominion Energy to propose at least $870 million in energy efficiency programs over the next decade. The new law designates that at least 5% of energy efficiency programs benefit low-income, elderly or disabled individuals.
Dominion Energy will file its initial proposals for new energy efficiency projects with the SCC for approval later this year following input provided by stakeholders.
“The GTSA lays out a very clear path for Virginia to reach a clean energy future that includes greater reliability, more security and grid resiliency,” Baine adds. “And it does this while ensuring prices remain reasonable and competitive. Virginia will make great strides in the coming years because of the new law.”