126.03.14 Ark. Code R. § 001 - Rules for Conservation and Energy Efficiency Programs (C&EE Rules)

Current through Register Vol. 2021, No. 11, November, 2021

Section 1 : Purpose

In the Energy Conservation Endorsement Act of 1977, Ark. Code Ann. §§ 23-3-401 to 405 (2003), ("the Act"), the Arkansas General Assembly recognized that "enormous amounts of energy are wasted by consumers of all classes and economic levels due to inadequate insulation of buildings and other inefficiencies in the use of energy."1 The Act broadly defines "energy conservation programs and measures,"2 and states that "energy conservation programs and measures" are broadly defined and that "[i]t shall be considered a proper and essential function of public utilities regulated by the Arkansas Public Service Commission to engage in energy conservation programs, projects, and practices which conserve, as well as distribute, electrical energy and supplies of natural gas, oil, and other fuels."3

Furthermore, the Act provides the Commission with the authority to "propose, develop, solicit, approve, require, implement, and monitor" energy efficiency programs "by utility companies" if the Commission finds that such programs and measures "will be beneficial to the ratepayers of such public utilities and to the utilities themselves."4 "At the time any such programs or measures are approved and ordered into effect" by the Commission, the Act requires that the affected utility also "be allowed to increase its rates or charges as necessary to recover any costs incurred by the public utility company as a result of its engaging in any such program or measure."5

Due to the current level and expected increases in energy prices for both infrastructure investment and commodity purchases, along with the minimal level of energy efficiency programs in Arkansas, Commission action regarding energy efficiency is necessary. Consequently, the Commission has developed these rules. These rules apply to the provision of both electricity and natural gas service subject to the jurisdiction of the Arkansas Public Service Commission.

Section 2 : Benefits and Objectives of Energy Efficiency Programs
A. An overriding focus for any energy efficiency initiative should be the benefits and objectives of the initiative. The overall objectives of the initiative are to encourage and enable utility customers to make the most efficient use of utility capacity and energy and to discourage inefficient and wasteful use of energy. Objectives can take the form of standards, codes, or programs. When proposing any one or a combination of energy efficiency programs, standards, or codes, a utility shall describe, in qualitative and quantitative terms, how its proposal furthers or accomplishes any or all of the following objectives or ancillary benefits in support of energy efficiency that are reasonably applicable to the utility's proposal. Should the utility determine that its proposal does not

accomplish or meet one or more of the listed objectives or benefits, the utility shall briefly explain why its proposal does not do so.

* Energy savings directly attributable to program activities;

* Long-term and permanent changes in behavior, attitudes, awareness, and knowledge about energy savings and use of energy efficient technologies in order to achieve energy savings;

* Permanent peak electric demand reduction;

* Energy cost savings and cost-effectiveness;

* Reliability enhancements;

* Energy security benefits;

* Environmental benefits;

* Economic development/competitiveness benefits;

* Increases in system-wide capacity;

* Accelerating the commercialization of advanced or emerging technologies;

* Improving affordability of energy for all customers; and

* Implementing programs in an efficient manner;

B. When providing information on these objectives, utilities are directed to describe, in quantitative terms, the benefits and costs of these different aspects of the program, standard, or code, and to comment on the barriers that impede accomplishment of these energy efficiency objectives and how to overcome these barriers. Utilities are also encouraged to provide estimates of the energy efficiency potential (including demand savings) in Arkansas associated with these options.
Section 3 : Definitions

Administrator - The entity responsible for creating and managing an energy efficiency program or portfolio of programs.

Cost-effective - A standard used to describe a "net beneficial" result for programs to be implemented, determined through a process that includes a review of relevant benefit/cost tests. A "cost-effective" program would be one that has a high probability of providing aggregate ratepayer benefits to the majority of utility customers.

Deemed Savings - Pre-determined, validated estimates of energy and peak demand savings attributable to particular energy efficiency measures, based upon engineering calculations, baseline studies and/or reasonable assumptions. Such savings are generally those representing the difference between standard efficiency measures and energy efficient measures. Deemed savings values must be revised periodically to reflect new technologies and new federal, state or local policies and codes.

Demand Response - Changes in energy use by end use customers from their normal consumption patterns in response to changes in the price of energy over time, or in response to incentive payments designed to induce lower energy use at times of high wholesale market prices or when system reliability is jeopardized.

Energy Efficiency - Reducing the rate at which energy is used by equipment and/or processes while maintaining or improving the customer's existing level of comfort and end-use functionality at a lower customer cost. Reduction in the rate of energy used may be achieved by substituting more advanced technology or by reorganizing the process to reduce waste heat, waste cooling, or energy. Demand response is a form of energy efficiency.

Energy Efficiency Savings- Energy efficiency (kW, kWh, ccf) savings are determined by comparing measured energy use before and after implementation of an energy efficiency measure or by reference to a set of deemed savings approved by the Commission.

Evaluation, Measurement, and Verification (EM&V) - The performance of studies and activities intended to determine the actual savings and other effects from energy efficiency programs and measures.

Implementer - An entity charged by a utility to deliver programs to customers. Implementers, Administrators, and utilities may be the same entity, or related by a contract.

Market transformation - Strategic efforts to induce lasting structural or behavioral changes in the market that result in increased adoption of energy efficient technologies, services and practices. Energy savings from market transformation programs must be beyond that which would be achieved through compliance with building codes and appliance and equipment efficiency standards.

Measure - The equipment, materials and practices that when installed and used at a customer site result in a measurable and verifiable reduction in either purchased energy consumption, measured energy or peak demand or both.

Portfolio - The entire group of programs offered by an administrator.

Program - A particular energy efficiency service or set of services to a particular target population.

Program Plan - A plan to deliver a portfolio of energy efficiency programs which includes a set of benefit/cost test results, specific objectives that can be evaluated using quantifiable measures, and provisions to evaluate, monitor and verify results.

Program Year - The year in which programs are administered and delivered, for the purposes of planning and reporting, a program year shall be considered a calendar year, January 1 through December 31.

Section 4 : Administration and Implementation of Energy Efficiency Programs
A. All electric and gas utilities in Arkansas under the jurisdiction of the Commission shall propose and be responsible for the administration and implementation of cost-effective energy efficiency programs within their service territories. Each utility shall file an application for approval by the Commission of its portfolio of energy efficiency programs. The energy efficiency program portfolio of each utility shall include programs for all customer classes.
B. Waivers

Exemptions from these rules may be granted by the Commission in accordance with Rule 1.03 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure. Nothing in these Rules shall preclude the Commission from modifying these Rules on its own initiative or in response to a party's motion and after notice and hearing.

C. Independent Administrator

The Commission may designate an administrator independent of the utilities, although the utility will ultimately retain the responsibility for compliance with these rules.

Section 5 : Plan Filing Requirements
A. General Requirements

Administrators shall propose general program designs, specific programs, and specific measures. Administrators may propose programs and/or measures in any combination. All programs should include the following general elements:

*A showing of high probability of providing aggregate ratepayer benefits to the majority of ratepayers.

* The identification of the specific objectives of the program.

* The identification of the specific EM&V procedures that will be used to determine whether the program has achieved its stated objectives.

B. Portfolio Description and Support

Each plan filing shall address the following:

* demonstration that the scope of programs serves all customer classes;

* plan benefit/cost analysis listing total costs and benefits, including expected savings goals for the portfolio of programs;

* cost recovery proposal; and

* any additional supporting information the administrator may propose.

C. Program Description and Support

Each program filing shall address the following:

* services to be provided;

* target population;

* all barriers being addressed and how they are being addressed;

* proposed customer incentives (if any);

* an evaluation, measurement and verification plan using an industry accepted protocol approved by the Commission;

* timeframe if the program term is limited;

* a plan for addressing over-subscription to the program;

* an analysis demonstrating that the program or measure is beneficial including the prescribed cost / benefit analyses;

* estimated energy and peak demand savings and the basis for these savings estimates, which may include Deemed Savings as approved by the Commission; and

* any additional analyses the administrator may propose.

D. Uniformity of Programs

Programs addressing both electric and gas customers shall be coordinated to the extent reasonable.

Fuel switching and load building programs not otherwise authorized under the Commission Rules and Regulations Governing Promotional Practices of Electric and Gas Utilities shall not be included as energy efficiency programs.

E. Customer Incentives

Programs may include incentives to encourage customers to make energy efficient investments if the incentives are cost justified and are a component of a program that has a high probability of providing aggregate ratepayer benefits to the majority of utility customers.

Incentives may include information, technical assistance, leasing programs, product giveaways and direct financial inducements. Financial inducements may include but are not limited to rebates, discounted products and services, and low rate financing.

All customer incentives shall be considered in the benefit/cost testing of programs. Costs of customer incentives shall be considered a direct program cost.

Incentives should not be any higher than necessary to overcome the customers' barriers to invest in the measure and should be reduced or eliminated as the measure becomes more of a standard practice.

F. Statewide Programs

The Commission, after notice and hearing, may direct utilities to offer uniform statewide energy efficiency and conservation programs if it determines such standardization to be the most cost-effective result and in the public interest. Utilities may request approval to offer statewide or region-wide programs for which public messages, commercial terms and conditions, and customer reception are best served by such an approach.

G. Pilot and Quick Start Programs

The Commission may approve pilot energy efficiency programs. A pilot program design is distinct from Quick Start and other program designs in that it shall include explicit questions that the pilot will address; explicit EM&V designed to address pilot questions; estimates of program costs and savings; a provisional benefit/cost evaluation; and shall be of limited duration until reassessment after a pre-determined period. Pilot programs shall have characteristics from among the following:

* Addressing a new end use;

* Applying a new technology or a new delivery method;

Quick Start programs are programs that are limited in nature and that in other jurisdictions have been shown to have a high probability of providing aggregate ratepayer benefits to the majority of utility customers. Although estimates of program costs must be included in proposals to implement all Initial Plan Quick Start programs, Quick Start programs are exempt from the requirement to provide cost-effectiveness showings under the benefit-cost tests of Section 6. Estimated energy and demand savings and an explicit EM&V program must be included for all Quick Start programs except the statewide Education program.

Programs that are neither Pilots nor Quick Start programs must comply with all of the plan filing requirements of this section.

All costs for Pilot, Quick Start, and other programs shall be considered eligible for cost recovery.

H. Program Filing Procedures and Schedule

A program filed under these rules shall not be implemented until a Commission order is issued expressly approving the program.

The period from the filing date to the date of the Commission order shall be no more than one hundred and eighty days which will permit investigation, analysis, and adjudication of the program.

The Commission shall establish a procedural schedule for the review of each program filing.

Section 6 : Benefit/Cost Tests
A. Administrators shall present sufficiently detailed calculations, sensitivity analyses, and supporting testimony of the effect of the proposed conservation and energy efficiency program using each of the following tests set forth in the California Standard Practice Manual: Economic Analysis of Demand-Side Programs and Projects, (State of California, Governor's Office of Planning and Research, July 2002), (hereafter "Manual"): The Participant Test, The Ratepayer Impact Measure Test, The Total Resource Cost Test, and the Program Administrator Cost Test.

The Commission will rely on the formulae found in the Manual. However, the Commission may rely on some inputs contained in the Manual and not on others. Furthermore, the costs and benefits contained in the Manual are suggestions and are not endorsed by the Commission for every program. For this reason, the Commission will not limit the costs and benefits that can be considered in the benefit/cost tests to those listed therein.

Cost-effectiveness results shall be presented on both a program and portfolio basis.

Administrators may submit additional economic analyses and benefit/cost test information in support of a proposed program.

B. A utility shall use an evaluation period of either ten years (a gas utility may use an evaluation period of fifteen years), or the actual measure lives for each measure in a program to evaluate a program or program portfolio.

Results of the tests shall be presented consistent with the descriptions shown in Table 1, or by other means as approved by the Commission.

TABLE I - Cost-Effectiveness Tests with Primary and Secondary Means of Expressing Test Results

Participant Test

Primary

Secondary

Net present value (all participants)

Discounted payback (years) Benefit-cost ratio ("BCR") Net present value (average participant)

Ratepayer Impact Measure

Lifecycle revenue impact per Unit of energy (kWh or therm) or demand customer (kW)

Net present value

Lifecycle revenue impact per unit

Annual revenue impact (by year, per kWh, kW, ccf, or customer)

First-year revenue impact (per kWh, kW, ccf,

or customer)

BCR

Total Resource Cost

Net present value (NPV)

BCR

Levelized cost (cents or dollars per unit of energy or demand)

Societal (NPV, BCR)

Program Administrator Cost

Net present value

BCR

Levelized cost (cents or dollars per unit of energy or demand)

Section 7 : Cost Recovery
A. Cost recovery of conservation and energy efficiency programs shall be in accordance with the provisions of Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-401 et seq. Cost recovery shall be limited to the incremental costs of providing the program that are not already included in the then current rates of the utility, and may include direct program costs, lost contributions to fixed costs and utility energy efficiency incentives.
B. A utility may request cost recovery through a surcharge or rider. If a utility requests cost recovery through a surcharge or rider, the cost recovery through that mechanism shall be limited to the incremental costs of providing the program that are not included in the then current rates of the utility, and may include direct program costs, lost contributions to fixed costs and utility energy efficiency incentives.
C. A utility may request that direct program costs and lost contribution to fixed costs from approved program budgets be included in the rider. A utility may request contemporaneous recovery of these costs via such rider.
D. Demand response programs that involve rates (e.g., interruptible service, curtailment, off-peak service, time-of-use rates) shall not be included in any surcharge or rider. The rates for those mechanisms will be established through utility-specific rate or tariff proceedings.
E. If a utility is recovering conservation and energy efficiency program costs through a surcharge or rider, the utility shall file, contemporaneous with the Annual Report under Section 9, a re-determined Energy Efficiency Cost Rate ("EECR"). In support of this re-determined rate, the utility shall file a schedule of actual program costs for the reporting period, actual amounts collected under the rider for the reporting period, and approved program budgets for the next calendar year. In addition, if the utility seeks Commission approval to recover lost contributions to fixed costs and/or utility energy efficiency incentives, and the utility seeks to recover these costs through a surcharge or rider, the utility shall incorporate these costs into the supporting schedule. Any incentive calculations shall be based on the reporting year. The EECR shall be adjusted to reflect a reconciliation of any over or under recovery for the prior year and the approved budget for the next calendar year.
Section 8 : Program Plans

Program plans shall cover at least one year and may cover up to three years.

All programs filed by gas and electric utilities should be consistent and should be fuel neutral, i.e., they should be compliant with the Commission Rules and Regulations Governing Promotional Practices of Electric and Gas Utilities, including restrictions on fuel substitution and load building programs.

Program plans shall reflect the effects of all energy efficiency programs in the electric resource plans or natural gas procurement plans of the electric and natural gas utilities respectively. Furthermore, all energy efficiency programs shall be consistent with each utility's current electric resource plans or natural gas procurement plans.

A. Initial Plan Filings

The initial filings of energy efficiency programs will cover program years 2007-2009. (Program year 2007 will be a partial calendar year, while 2008 and 2009 will be full calendar years.) They should initially include energy efficiency measures that can be implemented on a relatively "quick start and/or pilot" basis. The initial programs should be limited in nature in order to enable implementation in the 2007 program year. Proposed "quick start" or pilot programs for program year 2007 shall be filed not later than July 1, 2007 with review to be completed and implementation to occur not later than October 1, 2007. Electric and gas utilities should file energy efficiency programs choosing individual programs from within the following general list of Initial Program Categories:

Education: This would include the education of customers of all classes on energy efficiency and conservation. It should, to the greatest extent possible, be a consistent statewide group of messages. It should include education of builders and installers of equipment. All messages should be fuel neutral. The messages should encourage the efficient use of electricity and gas. The messages should increase awareness of opportunities to use electricity and natural gas more efficiently. This category of programs would apply to all customer classes.

Energy Audits, Evaluations leading to savings: This would include home and commercial energy audits and audits of commercial and industrial processes and equipment. The audits and evaluations would produce recommendations for opportunities to implement site-specific efficiency and conservation measures. Programs would be designed for audits to lead to savings results, and could include cost-effective and economically justified customer incentives to encourage the implementation of site-specific measures. This category of programs would apply to all customer classes. A training component to increase the number and quality of auditors will be needed.

Inspection and tune up of heating and air conditioning systems: This would be applicable to residential, commercial, and industrial systems. This category of programs would apply to all customer classes.

Lighting: Improved lighting for residential, commercial, and industrial customers. This category of programs would apply to all customer classes.

Increased deployment of demand response programs: Many programs already exist. This would look for additional opportunities to offer demand response programs including interruptible service, curtailment service, off-peak service, etc. In the near term, this category of programs would apply to commercial and industrial customer classes and may eventually extend to residential customers.

Weatherization: A Residential weatherization program that would be based solely on efficiency criteria, targeting least efficient homes first. The program should establish clear criteria to target the least efficient homes first. This category of programs would apply to the residential customer class. (An example of such a program is the Quick Start and comprehensive Severely Energy Inefficient Homes ("SEIH") program, which the Commission has directed all investor-owned gas and electric utilities to offer, using either the existing State Weatherization Assistance Program ("WAP") Network model6 or a substantially equivalent alternative implementation method chosen by the utility, provided the alternative method assures that the SEIH program and all other residential programs are effectively available to all customers, consistent with the timeframe for initial program plan filings.)

Commercial and industrial prescriptive incentive programs: these programs offer a fixed-dollar incentive for multiple defined prescriptive measures (i.e. lighting, HVAC replacements, occupancy sensors, motors, etc).

All programs filed from the above category list should have a high probability of providing ratepayer benefits to the majority of customers. Program plans for program years 2008 and 2009 may contain additional programs beyond those included in the above category list.

B. Comprehensive Plan Filings

Beginning April 1, 2009, each electric and gas utility shall file a comprehensive set of program plans (for program years 2010 and later) unless administration of programs has been previously delegated by the Commission, in which case each administrator shall file a comprehensive set of program plans by that date.

The programs proposed may continue to include, but are not limited to, the "quick start and/or pilot" programs contained in the List of Initial Program Categories.

Section 9 : Annual Reporting Requirements

By May 1 annually, each electric and gas utility shall file an annual report addressing the performance of all approved conservation and energy efficiency programs.

The report shall present the results of the prescribed EM&V measures for each program.

The report shall present the EM&V measures for the utility's portfolio.

The report shall include a measure of each program's savings.

The report shall present the amounts spent on each conservation and energy efficiency program and the total amounts spent on all programs.

Section 10 : Records

All energy efficiency measures are subject to inspection by the Commission.

All records of energy efficiency programs shall be maintained in sufficient detail to permit a thorough audit and evaluation of all program costs and program performance. This section does not limit the existing authority of the Arkansas Public Service Commission.

Section 11 : Opt Out / Self Direct Option for Qualifying Non-Residential (NR) Customers
A.
(1) An Arkansas NR customer of an electric or natural gas public utility that is classified within sectors 31 through 33 of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS), as it existed on January 1, 2013, may provide notice, by mail or electronic mail to the Commission on or before September 15 of any year of its decision to opt out of utility sponsored energy conservation programs and measures and direct its own energy conservation programs and measures if the NR customer satisfies the criteria set forth in Act 253 of 2013 codified as Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405(c) through (e). Non-residential customers providing notice to opt out in accordance with Act 253 should refer to Act 253 codified as Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405(c) through (e) for guidance. The remainder of Section 11 does not apply to customers providing notice to opt out in accordance with Act 253.
(2) An Arkansas NR customer of an electric or natural gas public utility that is not classified within sectors 31 through 33 of the NAICS but meeting the eligibility requirements of subsection L of Section 11 at a single metered location or subsection M of Section 11 at multiple metered locations within a single utility's service territory may request approval from the Commission for a Certificate of Exemption (Certificate) allowing the customer to "opt out" of participating in utility provided EE programs and to participate instead in a Self-Directed EE Option (SD Option). To be approved for a Certificate by the Commission, an eligible customer must successfully demonstrate that it:
(a) has implemented or invested in a measure(s) within ten years prior to the date the customer files its request for a Certificate with the Commission, or
(b) will implement or invest in a measure(s) within the duration of the applicable public utility's energy efficiency (EE) plan approved by the Commission pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405; or that it:
(c) has exhausted its opportunity to conduct further meaningful cost-effective EE programs and to participate in, or to realize benefits through participation in, its utility's EE programs.
B. The request for a Certificate shall be filed with the Commission no later than September 15 of any year in a customer-specific SD docket for verification and approval by the Commission. All customer and party filings related to a request for a Certificate, including requests to extend the initial filing deadline, should be made in a customer-specific SD docket. Requests to renew a Certificate should be made in the same docket as the original request. The request shall state and shall include adequate information for the Commission to verify that:
(1) the NR customer has implemented or invested in a measure(s), excluding any measures where the NR customer has already received an incentive from the utility as part of a utility-sponsored program, or will implement or invest in a new measure(s) designed to provide EE savings at the customer's facility in an amount equal to or greater than the most current EE goals or standards established by the Commission for the applicable program years and utility; or
(2) the NR customer has exhausted its opportunity to conduct further meaningful cost-effective EE programs and to participate in or, to realize meaningful benefits through participation in, its utility-provided EE programs.

If the customer claims that it has exhausted its opportunity to participate in, or to realize meaningful benefits through participation in, its utility-funded EE programs, then the public utility at issue may be made a party to the proceeding by order of the Commission.

Effective January 1, 2012, a NR customer that participates in a utility's EE program may not request a Certificate for five years following the NR customer's participation in that utility's EE program. For purposes of this bar, the phrase "participates in a utility's EE program" shall mean accepting from the utility direct installation of an EE measure or financing or direct monetary compensation in the form of an incentive or rebate to enable installation of an energy efficiency measure. Attendance at educational events and receipt of marketing materials shall not constitute such participation.

C. The request for a Certificate from a NR customer shall include the following minimum information:
(1) an estimate of the expected life of the measure(s) or investment(s);
(2) an estimate of expected EE savings or evidence of the actual EE savings realized or to be realized, which can be linked to a specific measure(s) or investment(s), stated in kilowatts (kW) or kilowatt hours (kWh) for electricity and in million British Thermal Units (MMBtu) or thousand cubic feet (Mcf) for natural gas;
(3) an explanation of how the estimate of expected EE savings or actual EE savings realized was calculated, including supporting workpapers;
(4) the name, title, company and contact information for the person responsible for calculating the expected EE savings;
(5) the historical annual usage and peak load information necessary to verify eligibility pursuant to subsection L or M, and a list of account numbers for all qualifying facilities;
(6) the estimate of expected EE savings or evidence of the actual EE savings realized, which can be linked to a specific measure(s) or investment(s), may include allowances for any reasonably known and measurable changes in operations, changes in output, or production level changes at the qualifying customer location(s);
(7) in addition, a customer alleging that it has exhausted its opportunity to conduct further meaningful cost-effective EE programs and to participate in, or to realize meaningful benefits through participation in, its utility's EE programs shall provide an explanation of how the customer has exhausted its opportunity to conduct further meaningful cost-effective EE programs and how the customer is unable to realize benefits through participation in its utility's EE programs including a description of any measures implemented or investments made by the customer that support that conclusion. The request shall include an analysis of the cost-effectiveness of the equipment or facilities that have been improved or that might be improved that is based upon the full life cycle of the equipment or facilities; the customer also may submit alternative cost-effectiveness analysis;
(8) a description of the steps the customer has taken or will take to measure and verify the achievement of the estimated EE savings supporting the request for a Certificate; and
(9) an affidavit certifying the accuracy of the information provided from a registered professional engineer or a company official authorized to bind the customer.
D. The Commission, the Commission General Staff, and the Attorney General may request additional information from the customer if such additional information is necessary to verify that the measure(s) implemented or to be implemented, or investment(s) made or to be made are designed to provide EE savings at the customer's facility in an amount equal to or greater than the most current EE goals or standards established by the Commission for the applicable program years and utility. Any such further information that is the basis of testimony or comments by General Staff or by the Attorney General before the Commission, and that is reasonably necessary to substantiate such testimony or comments, shall be filed in the appropriate docket.
E. Staff shall, and other parties to the applicable docket may, review the request for a Certificate and file findings and recommendations regarding the request for a Certificate by November 15 of the year in which the request for a Certificate was filed.
F. Either on its own motion or at the customer's request, the Commission may schedule a hearing to consider the request for a Certificate, or the Commission may without a hearing issue its determination regarding the request based upon the filings addressing the customer's request. A customer requesting a hearing shall file notice of such request in the customer specific docket within five calendar days after Staff's filing of recommendations regarding the Application. The Commission shall issue its order either approving or denying a customer's request for a Certificate by December 15 of the year in which the request is filed, unless such date is waived by the customer or extended by the Commission.
G. The request, if approved, shall be effective for the duration of the applicable utility's EE plan, beginning January 1 of the year following the year in which the request was filed. Upon approving the request for a Certificate under Section 11, the Commission shall notify the appropriate public utility of the exemption. The customer receiving the Certificate shall be exempt from charges billed through a surcharge or rider for EE programs and measures approved by the Commission pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405(a)(3) for that utility, including any lost contributions to fixed costs or utility incentives approved by the Commission. Beginning with the customer's January billing cycle in the year following the filing of the request and upon Commission approval of the Certificate, the utility shall cease billing the customer for any such charges. A customer receiving a Certificate shall not be eligible to participate in any programs or measures offered by the utility pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405.
H. A Certificate approved by the Commission under Section 11 shall continue for the duration of the public utility's EE plan approved by the Commission pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405 unless a different duration is approved by Commission order.
I. The customer who requested a Certificate pursuant to subsection B(1) above shall file a report presenting the measurement and verification of the achievement of the estimated EE savings supporting the request for a Certificate.
(1) In the case of a current Certificate holder seeking a new Certificate, the report shall be filed as part of the new Application. The Certificate holder shall use best efforts to report results for the greatest number of months available at the time the report is filed beginning with the first month covered by the Certificate.
(2) If a Certificate holder is not seeking a new Certificate, the report shall be filed no later than February 15 of the year following the expiration of the Certificate.
J. The customer must request and receive approval for a new Certificate applicable to each new program plan filed by the utility and the associated goals subsequently approved by the Commission pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405. The Commission may consider the customer's previous EE savings results as compared to goal in approving a subsequent request for a new Certificate.
K. A customer seeking to withdraw its Certificate shall notify the Commission of such withdrawal by November 15 of any year. Upon notification of withdrawal under this subsection, the Commission shall promptly notify the appropriate public utility of the withdrawal. Beginning with the customer's January billing cycle in the year following the notice of withdrawal, the utility shall begin billing the customer for any costs recovered through a surcharge or rider approved by the Commission pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405(a)(3), including any lost contributions to fixed costs and utility incentives approved by the Commission, and the customer shall become eligible to participate in any programs or measures offered by the utility pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405.
L. To be eligible for a Certificate under Section 11, the customer's facility at a single metered location must meet the following respective requirements for electricity or natural gas:
(1) Have a minimum peak electrical demand of greater than one megawatt (1 MW) at that location based upon the prior 12 months billing history at the time of the application, or
(2) Have an annual natural gas consumption of greater than seventy thousand MMBtu or Mcf (70,000 MMBtu or Mcf) at that location.
M. To be eligible for a Certificate of Exemption under Section 11 for multiple facilities with identical ownership within a single utility's service territory, the customer's facilities at two or more metered locations within that service territory must meet the following requirements for electricity or natural gas:
(1) Have a minimum peak electrical demand of greater than two hundred kilowatts (200 kW) at each location and a minimum combined peak electrical demand of one megawatt (1 MW), based upon the prior 12 months billing history at the time of the application, when aggregating the customer's facilities listed in the application and within that service territory, or
(2) Have an annual natural gas consumption of greater than fourteen thousand MMBtu or Mcf (14,000 MMBtu or Mcf) at each location and a minimum combined annual natural gas consumption of seventy thousand MMBtu or Mcf (70,000 MMBtu or Mcf) when aggregating the customer's facilities listed in the application and within that service territory.
N. The customer-specific verification information submitted to the Commission pursuant to subsections C and I of Section 11 by the applicant for a Certificate shall be protected from public disclosure by the Commission as proprietary facts or trade secrets pursuant to the provisions of Ark. Code Ann. § 23-2-316.
O. Each utility affected by a customer receiving a Certificate shall:
(1) reduce the level of energy sales in kWh for electricity or MMBtu or Mcf for natural gas by the amount of the exempted customer's usage during the base year established by the Commission for the purpose of establishing the EE savings goals for that utility,
(2) exclude the consumption of that customer from the calculation of any EE savings for the duration of the public utility's EE plan approved by the Commission pursuant to Ark. Code Ann. § 23-3-405, and
(3) at the utility's option, the utility may choose to seek approval from the Commission to revise its last approved EE plan to reflect the impact, if any, of adjustments resulting from customers being approved for "opt-out".
Section 12 : Evaluation, Measurement, and Verification

All aspects of utility-sponsored energy efficiency efforts, including, but not limited to, measures, programs, and reports are potentially subject to Evaluation, Measurement, and Verification (EM&V).

All EM&V activities undertaken as part of a utility-sponsored program, including, but not limited to, estimation of energy efficiency savings and process evaluations, shall be conducted consistent with the Arkansas Technical Reference Manual (TRM) and with national best program evaluation practices as established by the National Action Plan for Energy Efficiency ("NAPEE"), the State & Local Energy Efficiency Action ("SEE Action") Network, the International Performance Measurement and Verification Protocol ("IPMVP"), or other similar nationally or internationally accepted EM&V standards.

The TRM shall set forth Protocols for EM&V activities. An organization selected by a program administrator to conduct EM&V activities shall be independent of the organization or organizations involved in the particular EE program design, management, and implementation, such that the verification professionals conducting or reviewing evaluations have no financial stake, beyond the evaluation contract itself, in the program or program components being evaluated.

A. Duty to Follow Procedures in Technical Reference Manual

EM&V activities shall be performed in a manner consistent with the applicable TRM provisions. If the TRM does not specify provisions for an EM&V activity, the utility shall conduct its EM&V activity with a level of effort consistent with the provisions of the TRM.

B. Amendment of Technical Reference Manual
1. The Commission shall maintain a docket or dockets for consideration of TRM amendments.
2. Except for good cause shown, any petition to intervene in a docket for consideration of a TRM amendment shall be filed within fifteen (15) days of the filing of a TRM amendment.
3. Unless otherwise provided in a Commission order, within twenty (20) days of the date upon which a proposed TRM amendment has been filed, Staff shall, and the other parties may, file appropriate responsive testimony or request suspension of the proposed amendment. If a timely objection to an amendment is filed, or if the Commission acts on its own to suspend the proposed amendment, the amendment will be suspended and an appropriate procedural schedule will be established.
4. At the request of a party or on its own motion, the Commission may schedule a hearing to consider a suspended amendment. If no party requests a hearing within fifteen (15) days following suspension, hearing shall be deemed waived. No suspended amendment may become effective prior to a hearing or waiver of hearing.
5. The date of any Commission order approving a TRM amendment becomes the effective date for that amendment, unless otherwise provided in a Commission order.
C. Technical Reference Manual Availability

The TRM shall be available for inspection in the Secretary's Office and shall also be available on the Commission's website.

1 Ark. Code Ann. §§ 23-3-402.
2 Ark. Code Ann. §§ 23-3-403.
3 Ark. Code Ann. §§ 23-3-404.
4 Ark. Code Ann. §§ 23-3-405(a)(1) -(2).
5 Ark. Code Ann. §§ 23-3-405(a)(3).
6 Appendix D, pp. D-9 and 10, and Appendix E, pp. E-3 through 6 of the Report of Richard Sedano to the Commission on the Collaborative Stakeholder Process in Docket No. 06-004-R, with errata, dated November 2, 2006

Notes

126.03.14 Ark. Code R. § 001
5/23/2014

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