Boston, MA, Oct. 16— Massachusetts’ premiere energy-buying consortium PowerOptions is seeking developers to supply wholesale renewable energy to individual members of its 500 member consortium, particularly larger institutions such as area hospitals, universities and municipalities.
The innovative new energy supply program will provide PowerOptions members with a pre-negotiated power purchase agreement (PPA) to receive electricity directly from a renewable energy project located within the ISO-NE region or deliverable into the region. The total procurement level sought is a minimum 10 MWs of capacity which can be supplied from one or more projects.
“The PPA allows our larger members to purchase local renewable energy, impacting our region’s clean air and supporting the development of renewable energy,” said PowerOptions President and CEO Cynthia A. Arcate. “Many suppliers offer a ‘green’ product, but those offerings tend to be only the green attributes of renewable energy not the actual electricity and those attributes tend to be associated with projects far outside of our region.”
Following the model of PowerOptions electricity, natural gas and solar energy supply programs, the new Renewable Energy PPA program will have standardized terms and conditions and a negotiated price. It is contemplated that the PowerOptions electricity supplier will act as the conduit for the receipt of the electricity and firm it up to fill in the gaps in supply from an intermittent resource like wind or solar.
“This is a unique approach,” said Arcate, “because until now, an end use customer had to become a member of the New England Power Pool to take the power directly from a renewable energy facility and worry about managing how to make the supply firm. Our approach solves that problem and makes it seamless for the member.”
PowerOptions intends to select one or more project development firms with whom its larger members would contract for provision of renewable energy via a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA). All or a portion of Renewable Energy Credits associated with the quantities of delivered energy will be owned by the buyers who can either sell them or retire them.
“The intent of the new PPA Program is to provide price stability and a long-term hedge against price increases, as well as environmental benefits to our members’ electricity portfolios,” added Arcate. “We are looking for creativity from developers’ proposals to meet our objectives.”
Responses to the RFP are due October 30, 2015. It is anticipated the Renewable Energy PPA contract will be offered to interested, qualified members beginning as soon as 2016.
About PowerOptions PowerOptions® is the largest energy buying consortium in Massachusetts, serving more than 500 nonprofit organizations and governmental entities with combined annual energy sales of roughly $175 million. With supply programs for electricity, natural gas, and solar power, PowerOptions provides its members budget certainty and savings, as well as best-in-industry consumer protections. Joining is easy—any nonprofit or public institution in Massachusetts may become a member and participate in this collective purchasing effort. For more information, visit www.poweroptions.org.