On August 20, 2007, with the signing of Session Law 2007-397 (Senate Bill 3), North Carolina became the first state in the Southeast to adopt a Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard (REPS). Under this new law, investor-owned utilities in North Carolina will be required to meet up to 12.5% of their energy needs through renewable energy resources or energy efficiency measures. Rural electric cooperatives and municipal electric suppliers are subject to a 10% REPS requirement.
Although the new law sets forth a number of details, these electric power suppliers generally may comply with the REPS requirement in a number of ways, including the use of renewable fuels in existing electric generating facilities, the generation of power at new renewable energy facilities, the purchase of power from renewable energy facilities, the purchase of renewable energy certificates, or the implementation of energy efficiency measures. Renewable energy facilities include facilities that generate electric power by the use of a renewable energy resource, combined heat and power systems, and solar thermal energy facilities. Renewable energy resource includes a solar electric, solar thermal, wind, hydropower, geothermal, or ocean current or wave energy resource; a biomass resource, including agricultural waste, animal waste, wood waste, spent pulping liquors, combustible residues, combustible liquids, combustible gases, energy crops, or landfill methane; waste heat derived from a renewable energy resource and used to produce electricity or useful, measurable thermal energy at a retail electric customer's facility; or hydrogen derived from a renewable energy resource.
On February 29, 2008, the Commission issued an Order Adopting Final Rules implementing Senate Bill 3.
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