It’s Report Card Time! New National Scorecard Grades State Shared Renewables Programs
May 17, 2017
Launched today, IREC’s new National Shared Renewables Scorecard, offers a first-of-its-kind simple scholastic grading system (A+ through D-) in the form of a free online resource. It evaluates state programs that are up and running using objective scoring criteria based on best practices for program design — programs that enable multiple customers to share the economic benefits of one renewable energy system via their individual utility bills.
The scorecard evaluates programs according to defined criteria in five categories:
- general program details;
- customers and subscriptions;
- generation systems;
- bill credits; and
- renewable energy credits.
Okay, I’ll get to the punch line. Currently active programs received these grades:
- Two A grades: Maryland and Washington, DC.
- Six B grades: Colorado, Delaware, Massachusetts (Virtual Net Metering), Minnesota, New Hampshire and New York.
- Five C grades: California (Virtual Net Metering), Connecticut (Virtual Net Metering), Massachusetts (Neighborhood Net Metering), Maine and Vermont.
- One D grade: California (Enhanced Community Renewables component of Green Tariff Shared Renewables).
The scorecard’s criteria are shaped by IREC's extensive experience in state proceedings for shared renewable energy over the past decade, and further guided by input from diverse external stakeholders. They are based on
best practices highlighted in IREC's Model Rules for Shared Renewable Energy Programs and in alignment with IREC's Guiding Principles for Shared Renewable Energy Programs. Our State Shared Renewable Energy Program Catalog offers a detailed overview of state shared renewables program rules. Used together, the catalog and the scorecard offer valuable insight into the components of these programs and their effectiveness.
Beyond the 14 state programs the scorecard currently grades, additional programs have been enacted via legislation and/or are still under development through regulatory rulemaking. These will be graded once finalized and implemented. To date, 21 state shared renewable energy programs have been enabled across 15 states and the District of Columbia.
There’s also a user-friendly DIY Scoring Tool along with the national scorecard, allowing policymakers and other stakeholders to use the same criteria to score other programs — including proposed or pending state programs — to evaluate the impact of certain components on the overall program design.