Category Archives: Procurement Initiatives

Massachusetts 83C RFP For Long-Term Offshore Wind Energy Contracts Issued

John Dalton, President & Carson Robers, Consultant, Power Advisory LLC

With approval from the Department of Public Utilities earlier in the week through D.P.U Order 17-103, the Massachusetts electric distribution companies issued a Request for Proposals for Long-Term Contracts for Offshore Wind Energy Projects on June 29, 2017. This kicks off the first in a series of competitive solicitations under Section 83C of Chapter 169 of the Acts of 2008 for 1.6 GW of offshore wind (OSW) capacity by June 2027.

Three existing Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Massachusetts lease holders – Deepwater Wind, Bay State Wind LLC (DONG Energy and Eversource), and Vineyard Wind (Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners and Avangrid Renewables) – meet the definition of an eligible bidder and are expected to submit proposals by the December 20, 2017 deadline. Proposals are required for the target capacity of 400 MW, with both a project specific generator lead line and expandable transmission option. Additional proposals between 200 MW and 800 MW may also be submitted, but proposals with project capacities greater than 400 MW must be determined to be superior to other proposals, as well as to likely offer significantly more economic net benefits to Massachusetts ratepayers than procuring this capacity through subsequent solicitations.
TIMING OF SOLICITATION Although the DPU also reviewed the method for solicitation and execution, the timetable was the only component of the RFP where changes were directed. A one-month reduction in the evaluation period by and three-month reduction in the selection and contract negotiation periods by was directed by the DPU. This change reflects commenters (including Bay State Wind) and DPU contentions that acceleration will maximize ratepayer and environmental benefits.

The scheduled phaseout of the 2.3 ¢/kWh Production Tax Credit (PTC) primarily motivated this timing decision. Each year from now through 2019 the PTC is reduced by 20%, so that the amount for projects initiating construction in 2017 is 80%, 2018 60% and 2019 40% of the full amount, after which it is no longer available. Completing the solicitation in the middle of Q3 instead of Q4 2018 increases the chances that the successful proponent(s) will qualify for the PTC. Find the revised schedule below.

Overall the accelerated schedule is expected to result in lower development costs and increased project viability, with projects online sooner and offering more benefits than under the initially proposed RFP. The effect of the four-month schedule advancement is largely a greater likelihood of the successful proponent being able to capture the PTC available in 2018, but the change supports the development of US offshore wind industry. To realize cost reductions that have been achieved in Europe’s OSW industry, the supportive policy environment offered by policymakers and regulators in states like Massachusetts are essential.

Power Advisory would welcome the opportunit y to assist clie nts in assessing opportunities in the nascent US offsh ore wind market, especially the upcoming BOEM Massachusetts WEA lease sale auctions , participation in subsequent 83C solicitations, and submitting comments on this RFP.

A PDF version of this commentary is available here. 

NYSERDA Tier 1 REC RFP Review

New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) issued a Request for Proposals to purchase approximately 1.5 million Tier 1 (Tier 1 is equivalent to Class I as the term is used in New England) Renewable Energy Credits (RECs), about 430 MW at a 40% capacity factor.

RFP Schedule: Key Dates

Read Power Advisory’s full review of the NYSERDA RFP here.

Massachusetts Offshore Wind Energy Area Lease Opportunities

On April 28, 2017 the Massachusetts Electric Distribution Companies (EDCs) jointly submitted a request for approval of the 83C Request for Proposals (RFP) for long-term contracts for 400 to 800 MW of offshore wind energy generation to the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU). This draft RFP contains a schedule that calls for the final RFP to be released on June 30, 2017.

It is expected that the three existing Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) Massachusetts lease holders, Deepwater Wind, Bay State Wind LLC (DONG Energy and Eversource), and Vineyard Wind (Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners and Avangrid Renewables) will submit bids, with one awarded a long-term contract. Given the additional capacity to be procured under the Massachusetts legislation of 800 to 1,200 MW and nascence of the U.S. offshore wind market, there is a significant opportunity for offshore wind development in the Rhode Island-Massachusetts and Massachusetts Wind Energy Areas (WEAs).

This client note discusses the upcoming MA lease auction, potential WEAs and past BOEM auctions.

Power Advisory would welcome the opportunity to assist clients in assessing offshore wind opportunities in RI-MA and other Atlantic markets, including the implications of such development on transmission and on-shore resources.

Read “Massachusetts Offshore Wind Energy Area Lease Opportunities” here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Atlantic Link Begins Open Access Solicitation Process, Power Advisory to Serve as Independent Administrator

Power Advisory LLC has been engaged by Emera as independent administrator for the Atlantic Link project’s energy solicitation, which was issued yesterday (January 11, 2017). The intent of this call is to select energy resources to be bundled with transmission in response to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ anticipated 2017 clean energy RFP. As independent administrator, we will provide assurance to proponents and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), as to the fairness and transparency of activities related to the Atlantic Link energy solicitation.

To access complete solicitation information parties can register on the project’s website. A notice of intention to participate is due by January 20, 2017; after which Power Advisory and Emera will jointly host a participant conference in Nova Scotia and via WebEx. Qualified participants will have until April 12, 2017 to submit proposals. The tentative solicitation schedule can be found below.

Atlantic Link Energy Solicitation Issued January 11, 2017
Notice of Intention to Participate due January 20, 2017
Mutual Confidentiality Agreement Due January 20, 2017
Participant conference (Meeting in Halifax, NS + WebEx) January 25, 2017
Deadline for submitting written questions February 8, 2017
Responses to questions posted to web site February 20, 2017
Individual meetings with proponents Week of February 20, 2017
Deadline for Proposals, by 3:00 pm (EST) April 12, 2017
Proposal Evaluation Period (estimated) May 10, 2017
Notification to Proponents (estimated) May 10, 2017
PPAs executed June 9, 2017
Projects in-service by Q4, 2022

Per the solicitation notice proposals will be evaluated and ranked on : offered price for sale of energy; evaluated cost of energy to the Atlantic Link terminus in New Brunswick, cost to firm the energy offered, maximization of the utilization of the transmission capability of the Atlantic Link, firmness of energy, energy source and resource mix, the proponent’s capacity to deliver the energy offer, financial capability and relevant experience, the proponent’s plans for community engagement and environmental approval plan, and the likelihood of successful execution of an Indigenous People’s declaration and plan.

Commentary on Alberta’s November Announcements of a Capacity Market and Coal Phaseout Now Available

On November 23, the Government of Alberta announced its intention to create a capacity market within Alberta’s wholesale electricity market, and released a detailed Alberta Electricity System Operator recommendation paper titled Alberta’s Wholesale Electricity Market Transition Recommendation that provides background and support for the changes being made.
The Electricity Market Transition Report can be found here.

Power Advisory’s summary and commentary on the Government of Alberta announcements is available below.

download energy report

The following day, the Government announced it had concluded agreements with the coal-fired generation facility owners to cease operation by 2030. These developments are part of fundamentally defining a different path going forward for Alberta’s electricity sector than the one it has been following for almost the past 20 years.
The Coal-Fired Generation Agreement Announcement can be found here.

Power Advisory’s summary and commentary on the Capacity Market Recommendation report is available below.

download energy report

Mass Clean Generation RFP Gathers Steam

Transmission developers are moving quickly to prepare to participate in the forthcoming Massachusetts Clean Generation RFP including Anbaric/National Grid (Vermont Green Line) and Emera (Atlantic Link), as the recently released working schedule indicates a proposal submission deadline of June 2, 2017.

For an update on these transmission projects and the full Mass. Clean Energy Generation RFP schedule view the client note here.

Power Advisory Summary of TriState RFP Winners

The various electric distribution companies and state agencies in Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island announced the results of the Clean Energy RFP Tuesday, indicating that contracts were being negotiated with six developers for about 460 MW.  The results are surprising as Power Advisory’s summary shows.

Please click here for Power Advisory’s summary of the Clean Energy RFP

Saskatchewan denies permit for Chaplin Wind and issues new guidelines for wind projects

The government of Saskatchewan denied a permit for a 177-MW wind power facility proposed by Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp.  The project was proposed for the Chaplin area, about 200 km west of Regina in the southwest corner of the province.  The key rationale for denying the permit was  the danger posed to migratory birds.  The Chaplin area is home to a shorebird sanctuary and is a major migratory route.  Algonquin was initially awarded a contract in 2012 for the facility under an RFP held by SaskPower, and has stated that it will now be seeking to find an alternative site for the development.

The Chaplin Wind Project was rejected after being the first to undergo a provincial environmental assessment.  The provincial government has also released new guidelines for the location of wind power projects. Wind farms will have to be located more than five kilometers from environmentally sensitive areas like parks, ecological reserves and some of the province’s biggest rivers.  In effect, the province has developed an exclusion zone that highlights areas wind cannot be developed, but locating outside the exclusion zone does not negate the requirement to undergo site assessments but is intended to streamline the approval process.

The development of clear siting guidelines for Saskatchewan wind projects is of particular importance given the ambitious goals the province has announced.  The province is expected to put out an RFP for about 200 MW of wind capacity in early 2017, and by 2030 expects to add about 1,600 MW to 1,800 MW of wind capacity by 2030.  These totals are incremental to the Algonquin facility.

Power Advisory would welcome the opportunity to assist clients evaluate opportunities offered by participating in SaskPower’s forthcoming Wind RFP.  We offer a broad understanding of Saskatchewan’s electricity sector and critical success factors in power supply RFPs.

Power Advisory leads consortium of renewable energy developers improvements to the connection assessment process in Ontario

Travis Lusney, Director at Power Advisory LLC (Power Advisory), was retained to be the technical lead for a consortium of over 20 potential Large Renewable Procurement (LRP) II participants representing different technology types (e.g., solar generation, on-shore wind generation, hydroelectric generation, and bioenergy).

As the technical lead, Power Advisory developed a new connection assessment process for the LRP II process and presented the proposed process with participating entities, including industry associations (i.e., Canadian Wind Association (CanWEA), Canadian Solar Industries Association (CanSIA), Ontario Waterpower Association (OWA), etc.). Power Advisory built consensus within the consortium by preparing technical briefings, leading group discussions and clearly understanding and incorporating individual entity’s needs.  The draft consortium positions were presented to the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO), who is overseeing the LRP II procurement and is the integrated system planner for Ontario.

Power Advisory was well positioned to be the technical lead for potential LRP II participants.  Travis Lusney is a former transmission power system planner and was a lead on the initial development of the Transmission Availability Test (TAT) and Distribution Availability Test (DAT), the connection assessment processes first used in the Feed-In Tariff (FIT) program, and subsequently used in the LRP I process.  Since joining Power Advisory, Travis has been an essential resource for a wide variety of clients seeking an understanding of the Ontario power system and developing a strategy for project development.  Travis’ deep knowledge of the Ontario power system and extensive understanding of the opportunities and shortcomings of connection capability are valuable resources for leading changes to the LRP II connection assessment process.

Power Advisory has a history of successfully leading and advising consortium of developers on a wide range of electricity sector matters.  Power Advisory successfully negotiated changes to the IESO market rules and IESO contracts related to integration of variable transmission connected renewable generation into the IESO electricity market.

For further information, please contact Travis at tlusney@poweradvisoryllc.com

Alberta’s Climate Leadership Plan

The Alberta Government has declared policy direction to: 1) establish a price on carbon; 2) phase out coal-fired generation by 2030; and 3) accelerate renewable generation developments. These are the key policies that will impact Alberta’s wholesale energy market within the Alberta Government’s broader Climate Leadership Plan.

Power Advisory Summary and Preliminary Commentary can be found in our Reports Section (click here)