- Ameren Missouri says it can now begin offering a new renewables program aimed at large commercial and industrial customers, and municipalities "of any size."
- The program won approval from the Public Utilities Commission on Wednesday; Ameren says it is the only offering of its kind in Missouri.
- The PUC's approval allows Ameren to acquire up to 200 MW of new renewable energy generation, after it secures customer commitments. The utility can also purchase another 200 MW through power supply agreements.
Green energy tariffs have become increasingly popular as more companies and cities adopt targets to obtain 100% of their energy needs from renewable sources. However, Virginia regulators in May rejected a 100% renewable offering from Dominion Energy for its commercial and industrial customers, finding "there is simply too much uncertainty and subjectivity in the tariffs."
The new renewables program approved in Missouri is separate from the clean energy strategy Ameren presented in its 2017 integrated resource plan (IRP). The offering, dubbed the Renewable Choice Program, is aimed at municipalities and businesses that have renewable energy targets to meet.
Missouri's Renewable Electricity Standard, established in 2007, requires investor-owned utilities to use renewable energy to satisfy 15% of annual retail sales by 2021.
"Like Ameren Missouri, businesses and municipalities across the state have established renewable energy goals," Ajay Arora, vice president of power operations and energy management at Ameren Missouri, said in a statement.
The new program is subject to customer demand and available renewable energy supply, Ameren said. And the utility will need to obtain separate PSC approval and interconnect agreements for any owned or procured renewable energy sources supporting the program.
The utility proposed to add at least 700 MW of wind generation by 2020, at a cost of about $1 billion, along with 100 MW of solar over the next decade. Ameren also called for cuts to the utility's coal-fired generation and grid modernization.
Ameren has said it wants to retire more than half of its coal-fired generating capacity, including mothballing the Meramec Energy Center in south St. Louis County by the end of 2022.