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LADWP FiT 3rd Tranche Launching

02/03/14

  09:00:00 am, by Jim Jenal - Founder & CEO   , 520 words  
Categories: LADWP, Feed-in Tariff

LADWP FiT 3rd Tranche Launching - UPDATED 2X

UPDATE: The postponement is “until further notice.” We have a more detailed report on the delay of the third tranche of LA’s FiT here.


UPDATE: LADWP has informed us that the meeting scheduled for tomorrow has been postponed.  As soon as we learn more, we will update this post.


LADWP has announced that the third 20 MW tranche of its Feed-in Tariff program will launch on Friday, February 14, pending Commission approval.

Outgoing GM Ron Nichols signed off on the Board Packet, and the tweaks to the program suggested therein are set to be reviewed and approved on Tuesday, February 4 at 11:00 a.m.—that is, tomorrow morning—according to the email DWP sent out Friday afternoon.  (Can you say, “Friday news dump,” anyone?)

Apparently DWP made an update presentation to the Board on December 3.  We say apparently since it is referenced in the new materials, but we cannot find a copy of the report anywhere online.  We wonder, for example, if the Board was informed about the surprisingly low number of contracts that have been executed under the FiT so far?  As we reported back in early January (going just on published data and without access to the report to the Board), out of 109 projects that originally “won” in the First Tranche lottery, only 3—a 2.7% success rate—have signed contracts.

Crazy process that is LA's FiT

Alas, this was not “tweaked”

Hard to say whether any of the “tweaks” being proposed will do much to address that problem. 

We observe with some dismay DWP’s observation that “numerous developers have been confused or inexperienced with designing solar for the California market, ” since that could have been avoided (or at least reduced) if the program had given preference to local developers.  After all, one of the stated purposes of the FiT was to develop local jobs.

Seems like a missed opportunity and one that has delayed successful project implementation while the out-of-towners get educated on the mysteries and joys of doing solar in the City of the Angels.

Other tweaks include:

  • A 10-business day deadline has been added for developers to cure application deficiencies.  Nothing said about how long City staff will have to cure theirs.
  • LADWP must approve any lease language to “ensure consistency with the LA City Charter.”
  • The Standard Contract was modified to “clarify the assignment provision.” Useful, no doubt, but streamlining the entire 51-page contract would be even better.
  • A “re-application” form has been created to simplify the process for unsuccessful lottery participants to re-enter the next tranche.

Beyond those changes, “staff will post updated sample forms and contracts, answers to frequently asked questions, and checklists on the FiT Website to provide guidance and transparency."  A noble goal, to be sure, but it would be a start if they could post their own Board presentations in a consistent manner.

Assuming the Board approves these modifications, the window will open on the Third Tranche on February 14, with a base price for energy of 15¢/kWh.  The window will stay open for five business days and all completed applications will enter a lottery to see who will be part of the 20 MW allocation.  Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone - may your solar dreams come true.

2 comments

Comment from: terence_lewis [Member]  
terence_lewisit appears that you LADW is about as organised (NOT) as our UK government when it comes to renewable energy and feed in tarrifs. Forever ambiguous and always out of tune with the market. Have a nice day Dr. Terence Lewis. MSc.BSc.
02/05/14 @ 00:36
Comment from: Jim Jenal - Founder & CEO [Member]  
Dr. Lewis - For the most part, DWP did a good job of bringing the FiT to the market. However, their failure to get projects farther along is very troubling and this delay in considering the proposed “tweaks” is perplexing. Jim
02/05/14 @ 06:05
Jim Jenal is the Founder & CEO of Run on Sun, Pasadena's premier installer and integrator of top-of-the-line solar power installations.
In addition, Run on Sun offers solar consulting services, working with consumers, utilities and municipalities to help them make solar power affordable and reliable.

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