On February 10, 2015, BC Hydro announced that it is making available yearly target energy volume information to help developers with project planning under its Standing Offer Program (SOP). As part of the “Clean Energy Strategy” included in BC Hydro’s 2013 Integrated Resource Plan, the SOP’s annual target energy volume was increased from 50 GWh/year to 150 GWh/year.
In addition to facilitating project planning, the disclosure of yearly target energy volumes clarifies that the 150 GWh/year target volume applies to all SOP EPA-awarded projects that reach COD in a specified year. Accordingly, BC Hydro may in a given SOP program year award EPAs whose aggregate contracted energy exceeds 150 GWh/yr provided that those projects achieve COD in different years, and so long as the aggregate contracted energy for all SOP EPA-awarded projects that reach COD in any given year does not exceed 150 GWh. According to BC Hydro, the 150 GWh target volume will generally be satisfied by about three or four 15 MW projects reaching COD each year.
Available target volume for projects that will reach COD in between 2015 and 2018 is as follows (current as of February 10, 2015):
Click here to view table
Additional information regarding current SOP applications and available target volume is available on BC Hydro’s website here.
BC Hydro is currently developing its SOP target management process as part of its broader Standing Offer Program Review and will published it upon completion of the review.
About the Standing Offer Program
The SOP promotes the development of new, small scale, renewable energy projects located in British Columbia. Project generators must have a nameplate capacity greater than 0.1 MW but not more than 15 MW, and produce energy that is generated from a “Clean or Renewable Resource” pursuant to the Clean Energy Act (British Columbia), including biomass, biogas, geothermal heat, hydro, solar, ocean, wind or any other prescribed resource. Projects with existing generation are not eligible for the SOP.
Developers of projects eligible to participate in the SOP enter into a Standard Form Electricity Purchase Agreement (EPA) with BC Hydro, pursuant to which a developer is required to sell all energy from the eligible project to BC Hydro during the term of the EPA, which is of 20 to 40 years from commercial operation date (COD), with no requirement to deliver a specified quantity of energy to BC Hydro at specified times (BC Hydro accepts energy if and when it is delivered by the developer to the point of interconnection).
General information regarding BC Hydro’s Standing Offer Program, including program rules, is available here.