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week of Nov. 16, 2020

The EnerKnol Week Ahead is back to give you the key energy policy events happening next week, all powered by the EnerKnol Platform. Coming up, California regulators explore a long-term strategy to manage the state’s transition away from natural gas-fired technologies to meet decarbonization goals; Virginia proposes regulations for energy storage deployment to meet the state’s goal of 3.1 gigawatts by 2035; the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management will offer about 78 million acres in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico for oil and gas leasing.

Featured Entities


California PUC

Connecticut PURA

District of Columbia PSC

Illinois CC

Minnesota PUC

New York PSC

Virginia SCC

Federal Agencies

November 18
BOEM Gulf of Mexico Oil, Gas Lease Sale

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management will hold its seventh offshore lease sale under the 2017-2022 Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program, offering about 78 million acres. Under this program, ten region-wide lease sales are scheduled for the Gulf of Mexico region, where there is substantial resource potential and adequate oil and gas infrastructure. Spanning about 160 million acres, the region is estimated to contain about 48 billion barrels of undiscovered technically recoverable oil and 141 trillion cubic feet of gas. The sale will offer all available unleased areas in federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico for oil and gas leasing. READ MORE

Eastern Region

November 16
VA SCC Energy Storage Proposed Regulations

The Virginia State Corporation Commission staff is due to submit a report or response to comments on proposed regulations governing energy storage deployment. The Clean Economy Act, enacted in April, established a target of 3.1 gigawatts of energy storage by 2035. Among the key components, the commission proposed interim targets requiring Dominion Energy Inc. to seek approval for 250 megawatts by 2025 and an additional 950 megawatts by 2030. For Appalachian Power, the proposal establishes a requirement of 25 megawatts by 2025 and an additional 125 megawatts by 2030. Under the law, at least 35 percent of the facilities placed in service are to be purchased from, or owned by, a party other than the utility. PUR-2020-00120

November 16
DC PSC Energy Storage, DER Investigation

The District of Columbia Public Service Commission is due to receive comments regarding the regulatory treatment of distributed energy resources and energy storage. The commission seeks responses to a series of questions including how storage should be classified, such as generation, distribution transmission or distributed generation assets. Questions also concern regulatory considerations for front-of-the-meter and behind-the-meter storage, alternative DER deployment, additional regulations for customer protection and reliable operations, and parameters for potential storage pilot projects. FC1166

November 16
NY PSC Transco Transmission Project Comments

The New York Public Service Commission is due to receive comments on New York Transco LLC’s proposal to build the New York Energy Solution project, an electric transmission upgrade project designed to reduce grid congestion and boost renewable energy transmission from upstate to downstate. In September 2019, the commission authorized Transco, a consortium of major utilities, to borrow up to $400 million to upgrade transmission corridors that will allow increased transmission of renewable electricity across the state. Core components of the project include replacement of 80-year-old, 115 kilovolt transmission structures and construction of a 55-mile, 345 kilovolt overhead line from Schodack to Pleasant Valley on monopoles. Transco, working with National Grid, proposed the project through the New York grid operator’s competitive public policy transmission planning process. 19-T-0684

November 16
IL CC Transportation Electrification Comments

The Illinois Commerce Commission is due to receive comments on its proceeding to explore electricity rate design options to support transportation electrification infrastructure and gather information about the impact of rate structures on other forms of electrification, service, and affordability. The commission seeks stakeholder input on a series of questions related to rate design in three categories: impacts on EV adoption, effects on other forms of beneficial electrification, and implementation. The inquiry supplements previous efforts by the commission to study electric vehicles. In 2018, the commission took action to identify issues, potential challenges, and opportunities in EV deployment. READ MORE

November 20
CT PURA Residential Solar Tariffs

The Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority will hold a technical meeting featuring presentations and stakeholder discussions on the methodology used for designing residential solar tariffs and an annual rate setting process. The agency is in the process of establishing tariffs for electric distribution companies for Class I renewable energy projects located in residential customers’ premises. The proceeding will take into account the findings of a study focused on identifying and quantifying the benefits that distributed resources can provide to electric ratepayers, in an effort to inform future policies and initiatives that incentivize their deployment. 20-07-01

Western Region

November 17
CA PUC Long-Term Gas System Planning

The California Public Utilities Commission is due to receive reply comments on a report concerning reliability standards, as well as market structure and regulations governing gas transmission systems pertaining to the first of its three-phase proceeding to reconsider rules governing the state’s gas utilities. The second phase will examine coordination between gas utilities and generators, while the final phase will implement a long-term strategy to manage the state’s transition away from natural gas-fueled technologies to meet decarbonization goals. State and municipal laws concerning emissions are expected to result in the replacement of gas-fired technologies and lower natural gas demand over the next 25 years. R2001007

November 19
MN PUC CenterPoint Renewable Natural Gas Proposal

The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission will discuss CenterPoint Energy’s proposal to offer renewable natural gas, or RNG, interconnection service. The company said that the proposal responds to demand from more than a dozen recent inquiries from RNG producers regarding interconnection with the company’s Minnesota distribution system. The company also noted the growing call from its customers and environmental stakeholders to find sustainable solutions for carbon emissions. The proposal includes tariff revisions and other changes necessary to accommodate the new RNG interconnection service. M-20-434