U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy U.S. Department of Energy Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
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The Role of Renewable Energy Certificates in Developing New Renewable Energy Projects

The Role of Renewable Energy Certificates in Developing New Renewable Energy Projects

Date: 6/30/2011

The Role of Renewable Energy Certificates in Developing New Renewable Energy Projects (PDF 1.1 MB) is available as a free download. Over the past decade, renewable energy certificates (RECs) have become a common way to track ownership of the renewable and environmental attributes of renewable electricity generation. But what role do RECs play in the decision to build new renewable energy projects? Information from a variety of market participants suggests that the importance of RECs varies depending on a number of factors, including electricity market prices, the cost-competitiveness of the project, the presence or absence of public policies supportive of new projects, contract duration, and the perspective of different market participants. To strengthen the role RECs play in both compliance and voluntary markets, a number of options could be considered, including mechanisms to encourage long-term contracts, auctions, price floors, direct investment in projects, and greater price transparency.

This information was last updated on August 30, 2011