The Business Council supports the adoption of A.1705-A. This legislation would establish a self-directed or “banking” approach, for large electric customers encompassing all applicable state-imposed Clean Energy charges. The self-directed or banking approach would maximize investments in renewable energy, load reduction and REV related projects while at the same time, moderating rate impacts and reducing competitive inequities associated with current energy assessments.
The prosed legislation allows business customers a reasonable opportunity to utilize current energy assessment to meet the State’s energy goals and will make the cost of such efforts more manageable.
By allowing customers to only recoup money paid into Energy Saving Accounts upon completion of energy efficiency projects at their own facilities, customers will be strongly motivated to commit to clean energy and efficiency projects.
Most importantly, this legislation would provide large non-residential customers with the flexibility to implement energy efficiency projects – as well as system efficiency, renewable projects and infrastructure projects – that may be specific to their industries, facilities and/or processes.
Under the current paradigm the Public Service Commission establishes broad goals to be attained with energy assessment funds. The energy assessments are paid by all energy customers but are a substantial burden to energy-intensive manufacturers, with some facilities pay millions of dollars annually. After the State collects the energy assessments they are transferred to NYSERDA which establishes programs to attain theState’s goals, to be funded with assessment proceeds. NYSERDA will often consult with effected industries to design programs, but years of experience shows that self-directed programs will outperform the current process.
New York businesses compete with businesses in sixteen states that currently offer a self-direct provision for large energy customers, and with twelve other states allow some or all large customers to completely opt out of paying for energy efficiency programs. If New York were to adopt a self-directed program, manufacturing facilities would be able to use the program to invest in their New York facilities while also advancing New York’s energy goals.
For these reasons, The Business Council supports passage A.1705-A.