LADWP Feed-in Tariff Program Off to a Very Strong Start
Applications for 107 MW of Potential Local Solar Projects Received During Feed-in Tariff Program’s Opening Week
|LOS ANGELES — The opening week of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s new Feed-in Tariff (FiT) Program met with strong enthusiasm from customers and solar power developers who submitted applications for 107 megawatts (MW) of potential solar projects, ranging in size and located widely across the City and in LADWP’s service area in the Owens Valley.
On February 1, LADWP began accepting applications for the first 20-MW allocation of the 100 MW FiT Program for renewable energy projects ranging in size from 30 kilowatts (kW) to 3 MW. The applications submitted during the first five business days received their place on the FiT Review Priority List by a public lottery that occurred on Friday, February 8th. Applications received after Friday will be added to the queue in the order received. Projects will undergo review and technical screening in the order listed.
“We are very pleased by the enthusiastic response we’ve seen so far to the FiT Program, which paves the way for a robust local market and jobs for solar energy,” said Ronald O. Nichols, LADWP General Manager.
“It is important to note that project submittal is the first step and while not all of the proposed projects will be feasible, it is a tremendous response to the program,” said Aram Benyamin, Senior Assistant General Manager – Power System. “We expect that following the project review that will take place over the coming months, the first FiT projects will be on their way toward generating 20 MW of renewable solar energy for Los Angeles.”
Approved in January by the Board of Water and Power Commissioners, the LADWP FiT Program allows customers, solar companies, and other third parties to develop solar or other eligible renewable energy projects within LADWP’s service territory and sell all the power to LADWP at a set price for distribution on the city’s power grid.
The applications submitted so far for FiT projects include 2 MWs of capacity for 22 smaller solar projects ranging from 30 kW to 150 kW, and 105 MWs for 76 larger projects that range from 151 kWh to 3 MW. These projects were dispersed throughout the City of Los Angeles as well as the Owens Valley, where LADWP provides electrical service to several local communities. Of the projects located in the City of LA, about 60% of the projects were located in the San Fernando Valley; however the rest of the City was also well represented.
Applications will be reviewed based on their queue position on the FiT Review Priority List for up to 20 MW over the next five months. Eligible projects will be offered a standard 20-year contract that requires LADWP to purchase the solar power at a set price, starting at 17 cents per kilowatt-hour for the first 20 MW; Owens Valley projects will be at 14 cents per kilowatt-hour, with the price difference reflecting the added cost of transmission from the Owens Valley area to Los Angeles for solar facilities proposed in that location.
Subsequent 20-MW allocations will be made available every six months through 2016 until the full 100 MW is subscribed. The set price will decline after each 20 MW is reserved.
Based on input from the solar community, business leaders and other stakeholders, the program was designed to set aside a prescribed amount of reserved capacity for small and large projects. Each allocation will set aside 4 MWs for small projects ranging from 30 kW to 150 kW. The remaining 16 MWs will be available for large projects up to 3 MW. Additionally, the amount of capacity for projects located in LADWP’s Owens Valley service area is limited to 4 MW for the entire 100 MW program.
For more information, visit www.ladwp.com/fit.