Oregon’s Public Utilities Commission has shipped off to the legislature a report recommending preferred design attributes for a community solar program. The report’s recommendations include:
- Defining “community solar” as follows: “Community solar programs allow electric customers the opportunity to buy solar energy from a shared solar resource as opposed to installing solar capacity on their own property. Community solar customers share in the costs, risks, and benefits of solar projects through their utility bill.”
- Establishing a system capacity range of 25 kW to 2 MW.
- Extending community solar to all electric utilities (i.e., not just investor-owned utilities), but limiting recommendations to PUC-regulated utilities.
- Allowing utility or 3rd-party ownership of systems.
- Allowing residential and small commercial customers to participate.
- Setting bill credits at the resource value of solar, unless the PUC finds good cause to deviate.
- Requiring systems to be sited in Oregon.
- Requiring project developers to bear project risks.
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