NOTE: On February 2016, the PA Public Service Commission (PUC) issued a final rulemaking order amending and clarifying several provisions of PA Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard (AEPS), net metering, and interconnection standards.
Amendments to AEPS include revision of the definition of qualifying hydro and biomass facilities, adjustments to Tier I compliance obligations, and other minor amendments.
The final decision from the IRRC is expected around March 2016.
Pennsylvania's Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard (AEPS), created by S. 1030 on November 30, 2004, requires each electric distribution company (EDC) and electric generation supplier (EGS) to retail electric customers in Pennsylvania to supply 18% of its electricity using alternative-energy resources by 2020.* Eligible technologies There are two categories of energy sources under the law, termed "Tiers".
The standard calls for utilities to generate 8% of their electricity by using "Tier I" energy sources and 10% using "Tier II" sources by May 31, 2021.
Generally, eligible resources must originate within Pennsylvania or within the PJM regional transmission organization (RTO) in order to be counted for compliance.
However, out-of-state resources located in the MISO (which also serves a portion of Pennsylvania) may be used in areas served by the MISO.
This effectively limits the use of out-of-state MISO based resources to the Pennsylvania Power Co. Tier I sources include new and existing facilities which produce electricity using the following sources/technologies: photovoltaic energy, solar-thermal energy, wind, low-impact hydro, geothermal, biomass, wood pulping and manufacturing byproducts from energy facilities within the state, biologically-derived methane gas, coal-mine methane, and fuel cells. § 1648.2 for detailed definitions of eligible alternative-energy sources.) The Technical Reference Manual, first adopted in May 2009 and revised annually, contains a detailed description of how demand-side management will be addressed under the standard.
Tier II sources include (new and existing) waste coal, distributed generation (DG) systems less than 5 MW in capacity, demand-side management, large-scale hydro, municipal solid waste, wood pulping and manufacturing byproducts from energy facilities outside the state, and integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) coal technology. The eligible energy efficiency technologies listed at the top of this page are a selection of specific measured identified in the Technical Reference Manual.
Solar thermal technologies that do not produce electricity (e.g., domestic solar water heaters) are considered Tier II demand-side management resources.
Carve-outs Pennsylvania's standard provides for a solar set-aside, mandating a certain percentage of electricity generated by photovoltaics (PV).