Senate Bill 1149 directed Oregon's
two largest utilities, Portland General Electric and Pacific Power,
to collect a public
purpose charge from their customers to fund energy conservation and
renewable projects in the state. However, large electric consumer sites
that used over 8,760,000 kWh in the prior year may be eligible for the Large
Electric Consumer Public Purpose Program, also known as the Self-Direct Program,
which allows them to self-direct the conservation and renewable portions of
their public purpose charge rather than pay the utility directly.
How it Works
The Oregon Department of Energy reviews applications and approves sites
that meet eligibility criteria to become Self-Direct consumers. Certified sites
can submit conservation and renewable project applications to ODOE through the interactive
ODOE staff review applications and pre-certify eligible conservation or renewable project applications.
Sites then spend their own funds to build pre-certified projects. Once the
project is complete, they submit an application for credit to ODOE. ODOE
reviews and approves the eligible project costs, which include a small fee paid
to ODOE for program administration. Certified project costs are then added to
the conservation or renewable credit balance, and the credits do not expire.
Each month when a site has a conservation and renewable
credit balance, they can offset
the monthly conservation and renewable portion of the Public Purpose Charge,
meaning they do not pay the utility that portion of the PPC. The available credit
balance is reduced by the monthly conservation and renewable offset amount. Certified
conservation projects and Green Tags, also known as Renewable Energy
Certificates, increase the site credit while monthly offsets reduce them.