Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Renewable Energy Law News - Week of July 15, 2013

 
PV Renter bill signed into law in Hawaii

HONOLULU, Hawaii – A bill that would remove barriers for landlords to invest in renewable energy became law today.

Governor Neil Abercrombie signed four bills related to energy at a ceremony on Oahu on Wednesday. One of those measures was Senate Bill 19, Relating to Renewable Energy. SB 19 was enacted as Act 261, and is being called the “PV Renter” bill. The new law…

Exempts landlords and lessors who install renewable energy systems on their property and provide, sell, or transmit electricity generated from those renewable energy systems to tenants or lessees on the premises from the definition of public utility, under certain conditions.

Those conditions, taken from the language of the bill:

(i) An interconnection, as defined in section 269-141, is maintained with an electric public utility to preserve the lessees’ or tenants’ ability to be served by an electric utility;

(ii) Such person does not use an electric public utility’s transmission or distribution lines to provide, sell, or transmit electricity to lessees or tenants;

(iii) At the time that the lease agreement is signed, the rate charged to the lessee or tenant for the power generated by the renewable energy system shall be no greater than the effective rate charged per kilowatt hour from the applicable electric utility schedule filed with the public utilities commission;

(iv) The rate schedule or formula shall be established for the duration of the lease, and the lease agreement entered into by the lessee or tenant shall reflect such rate schedule or formula;

(v) The lease agreement shall not abrogate any terms or conditions of applicable tariffs for termination of services for non-payment of electric utility services or rules regarding health, safety, and welfare;

(vi) The lease agreement shall disclose: (1) the rate schedule or formula for the duration of the lease agreement; (2) that, at the time that the lease agreement is signed, the rate charged to the lessee or tenant for the power generated by the renewable energy system shall be no greater than the effective rate charged per kilowatt hour from the applicable electric utility schedule filed with the public utilities commission; (3) that the lease agreement shall not abrogate any terms or conditions of applicable tariffs for termination of services for non-payment of electric utility services or rules regarding health, safety, and welfare; and (4) whether the lease is contingent upon the purchase of electricity from the renewable energy system; provided further that any disputes concerning the requirements of this provision shall be resolved pursuant to the provisions of the lease agreement or chapter 521, if applicable; and

(vii) Nothing in this section shall be construed to permit wheeling.


EU Takes on German Green Energy Law

The European Commission plans to open proceedings on Wednesday against Germany's renewable energy law on the grounds that it breaches EU competition regulations.

Under the law, German electricity users pay a charge that goes towards funding renewable energy generation. Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia believes that exemptions granted to some energy-intensive German companies from those charges run counter to EU law.

The Commission plans to launch proceedings aimed not only at banning such exemptions in the future, but also requiring companies to repay the charges they were exempted from in the past.

Energy Commissioner G√ľnther Oettinger even called the entire renewable energy law into question in remarks to a conference hosted by German energy company E.on last week.


Photo via Flickr.

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