State Energy Standard Costs $1.6 Million

The Jamestown Board of Public Utilities was told by David Leathers, BPU general manager, the state Clean Energy Standard will cost BPU customers and additional $1.6 million. P-J photo by Dennis Phillips

The state-mandated Clean Energy Standard will be increasing cost for Jamestown Board of Public Utilities customers by more than $1.5 million

On Monday, David Leathers, BPU general manager, said BPU customers will be paying $1.6 million through the fuel adjustment surcharge to pay for renewable energy credits and zero emission credits. He said the increase cost is because of the mandates of the Clean Energy Standard. He added the last two electric rate cases with the state Public Service Commission also raised costs by $1.6 million.

As part of the state Clean Energy Standard that was approved by the state Public Service Commission in August 2016, state utilities are being charged zero emission credits to support the three nuclear power plants. The zero emission credits are estimated to cost ratepayers $7.6 billion between now and 2030, according to Leathers in January 2017.

According to David Gustafson, former Jamestown Board of Public Utilities electric and gas resource manage, in December 2017, the BPU will pay $75,000 a month, or $893,000 a year, to the state for their zero emission credit requirement in 2017 and 2018.

At the start of 2017, BPU customers also had to start paying toward renewable energy credits. This program cost BPU customers only around $3,000 in 2017. However, Leathers said in 2017 that the renewable energy credits cost would be increasing in future years.

Leathers Monday said state officials also have changed their timeline since the Clean Energy Standard was passed in August 2016. He said now Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants 100 percent clean electricity by 2040.

In January, Cuomo announced the launch of a Green New Deal initiative. The plan outlined in Cuomo’s 2019 Justice Agenda calls for a “globally unprecedented” ramp-up in renewable energy deployments as New York seeks to achieve 100 percent carbon-free electricity by 2040, and ultimately to eliminate its entire carbon footprint.

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