Environmental, North America

Alabama Power seeks renewable energy, including hydro

Alabama Power said last week that the utility is seeking proposals to meet future energy and reliability needs, including proposals for potential renewable energy projects.

The company issued two requests for proposals (RFPs). One is for a broad range of possible generation projects to meet future capacity and reliability needs. A second request is for renewable energy resources.

The renewable resources RFP allows a variety of different technologies to be submitted, including solar, wind, geothermal, tidal or ocean current, low-impact hydro and biomass, among others. Projects involving gas derived from sewage treatment processes, solid municipal waste or landfills, and combined heat and power projects also will be considered. The proposals can be energy-purchase contracts with terms of 10 or 25 years or turnkey projects and must be between 5 MW and 80 MW of capacity. 

Under the current order from the Alabama PSC related to renewables, Alabama Power has  the ability to secure up to 160 MW of renewable energy capacity per year. The number of projects is flexible but they must be presented to and approved by the PSC.

The renewables order, approved by the PSC in 2015, allows the utility to secure a maximum of 500 MW of renewables over a six-year period (abiding by the per-year cap outlined above). To date Alabama has secured about 90 MW under the order.  

The projects must be located in Alabama and connect to the company’s electric system. Alabama Power would receive all the environmental attributes from the projects.

All proposals for the renewables RFP must meet the criteria of the Green-e energy National Standard for Renewable Electricity Products, Gold Standard, the Climate Registry, or similar certifications approved by the company.

The company also plans to reach out to large commercial customers and industrial customers to gauge their interest in participating in renewable energy projects. A formal solicitation to customers is scheduled for late fall.

Bids are due by October 26, 2018.

For more information about the renewable RFP, please visit the company information page here.