Washington utility proposes shared solar program for C&I customers


Avista Utilities has filed an application with the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission to establish a green tariff option — the Voluntary Solar Select Program — for larger commercial and industrial customers. As proposed, the program:

  • Will allow participating customers to purchase solar energy from a PV facility owned by an independent solar developer, previously qualified in a competitive RFP process. The PV facilities contracted for in the 20-year PPA will total around 28 MW (DC), consisting of eight separately metered shared commercial solar projects.
  • Requires an eight-year contract term to participate, consistent with the renewable generation incentive under RCW 82.16. During the contract term, customers will pay a known “Solar Resource Rate” of $0.05291/kWh, and will receive a fixed “Solar Resource Credit” based on Avista’s embedded cost of energy included in rates for Schedules 21, 25 and 31. The Solar Resource Credit is $0.0298/kWh for Schedule 21, $0.0271/kWh for Schedule 25, and $0.0266/kWh for Schedule 31.
  • Incorporates incentives for customers who participate in a shared commercial solar project. Avista estimates the incentive will be $0.0231/kWh for Schedule 21, $0.02584/kWh for Schedule 25, and $0.02627/kWh for Schedule 31, for all kWh purchased from the solar facilities. Customers may receive up to $35,000 per year in total incentives.
  • Will retire RECs on behalf of participating customers.

Avista stated that it will continue to evaluate additional renewables program options for its small commercial customers and other rate classes, possibly including future additional phases of the Solar Select Program.