As the stakes for decarbonization get higher, it’s both strategic and appropriate for the interaction between voluntary programs and utility targets to evolve. Policymakers are increasingly recognizing the role the voluntary market can play in a state’s path to achieving 100 percent clean energy, even explicitly carving out space for it. Similar thinking on the value of the voluntary market has led to creative program design that complements utility targets in many contexts. Utilities’ urgent need to decarbonize, coupled with the voluntary market’s growth, makes a compelling case for utility leaders to integrate their voluntary renewable energy programs into their clean energy plans.
The AOCE capacity market design leverages these voluntary capacity investments in Green Energy by Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon and others to help meet State Energy goals in New England. NAESB is working on a standard REC "Master Agreement" to serve as a common model contract for utilities to provide voluntary REC's to Green Buyers. This will help utilities manage their REC accounting processes and simplify the terms and conditions for voluntary REC procurement nationwide.