With an enormous backlog in applications to utilities for interconnection by companies interested in developing renewable projects greater than 50 kW, the PSC updated its rules and requirements on January 25 in an effort to “clear the queue,” and weed out the speculative or inactive projects from the serious projects so that well-developed projects may proceed. The new rules include fixed deadlines for developer action and “interim” cost-sharing requirements for any system upgrades necessary to connect projects to the grid. Included among the new rules is the requirement that developers obtain the property owner’s consent to develop the project, using a specified form.
Community renewable projects make up the bulk of projects currently in the queue. In Central Hudson territory, just two companies, SolarCity and Cyprus Creek, together account for 81% of the proposals causing the backlog. CLP welcomes efforts by the Commission to weed out speculative projects by these giant companies, and will work to ensure that any new interconnection rules support locally-owned projects and address any unique challenges they may face.