FTC Increases Renewable Energy Rider Capacity

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The Barbados Light & Power Co. Ltd. (BL&P) submitted the Intermittent Renewable Energy Penetration Study to the Fair Trading Commission on Friday, February 13, 2015 in support of its request to increase the Renewable Energy Rider (RER) limit to 20 MW.

Given the information before the Commission, including the level of requests for participation in the RER programme, the Commission has accepted that 20 MW of distributed PV can be accommodated on the grid without creating challenges.

In order to facilitate broad uptake of renewable energy technology, the Commission has requested that the BL&P reserve 1MW of the last 3 MW of capacity for residential customers (customers in the Domestic Service, General Service & Employee classes) once the first 17 MW of capacity has been allocated.

The RER Credit factor will remain at 1.6 times the Fuel Clause Adjustment.The findings of the Study made specific mention of the need for PV systems to have Frequency Ride Through capabilities to reduce the risks associated with increasing the current level of renewable energy penetration on the grid.

The Commission has determined that at a minimum, all new distributed PV systems will be required to have inverters with Frequency Ride Through capabilities.

The BL&P is reviewing the interconnection provisions in the Renewable Energy Rider Requirements to give effect to this. It is also desirable that, where possible, existing systems should have this capability and the BL&P will discuss this with installers.

With respect to accommodating levels higher than 20 MW of intermittent renewable energy on the grid, the Study details a number of mitigating measures that should be implemented to ensure grid reliability and stability.

The Commission will have further discussions with the BL&P and this will be followed by public consultation to determine a viable long term RER capacity limit for solar and wind energy which can safely be accommodated on the grid. (Peggy Griffith, Chief Executive Officer, Fair Trading Commission)

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