Renewable energy prices are at an all-time historic low, and we have opportunities right now to lock in cheap, clean electricity for decades. One way to achieve this is by developing utility-size renewable energy projects in Utah. Utah Clean Energy’s expert testimony provided in technical utility proceedings has helped to bring multiple, utility-sized solar and wind projects to Utah! In fact, Utah now has well over a gigawatt of utility-sized solar, wind and geothermal projects!
The catch is that the utility is only required to purchase the clean energy as long as the price of the energy is less than the cost the utility would otherwise have to pay to acquire energy of another source (called Avoided Cost pricing).
Over the past several years, Rocky Mountain Power has successfully sought to limit their obligation to purchase renewable energy from third-party developers, and as a result, the number of solar projects built by third-party developers has slowed to a trickle.
Despite this setback, demand for clean energy in Utah is still on the rise. Energy customers of all types are demanding a cleaner energy mix. Utah Clean Energy worked to help develop new tariffs that allow large energy customers to directly procure clean energy, and now entities like Facebook and Salt Lake City are building clean energy projects to meet their energy needs.
While the continued growth in Utah’s renewable energy market is encouraging, it is important to ensure that everyone can choose to access clean energy – not just large companies – and that we maintain a robust and competitive marketplace for clean energy in Utah.