UWUA-IBEW Reply Comment cover 10-31-03 e.rtf
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UWUA-IBEW Reply Comment cover 10-31-03 e.rtf

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9 Pages
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October 31, 2003 stVia USPS 1 Class Mail Honorable Jaclyn A. Brilling, Acting Secretary State of New York Public Service Commission Three Empire State Plaza Albany, New York 12223-1350 Re: CASE 03-E-0188 – Joint Proceeding on Motion of the Commission Regarding a Retail Renewable Portfolio Standard. Dear Acting Secretary Brilling: Please accept for the State of New York Public Service Commission’s consideration an original and three copies of the Reply Comments of Local 1-2, Utility Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO and Locals 83, 97 and 503, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers in the above proceeding pursuant to the New York Public Service Commission’s Ruling Establishing Comment Procedures (Issued June 19, 2003) and Further Ruling Concerning Schedule and Procedure (Issued September 19, 2003). Respectfully submitted, Richard J. Koda, Principal Consultant to Utility Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO, Local 1-2 & International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Locals 83, 97 and 503 c: Active Party List as of August 27, 2003 via e- mail Emanuel Hellen, President Utility Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO, Local 1-2 Danny Addy, President/Business Manager/Financial Secretary International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 83 Thomas J. Primero, President/Business Manager/Financial Secretary ...

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October 31, 2003
Via USPS 1
st
Class Mail
Honorable Jaclyn A. Brilling, Acting Secretary
State of New York Public Service Commission
Three Empire State Plaza
Albany, New York
12223-1350
Re:
CASE 03-E-0188 – Joint Proceeding on Motion of the Commission Regarding a Retail Renewable
Portfolio Standard.
Dear Acting Secretary Brilling:
Please accept for the State of New York Public Service Commission’s consideration an original
and three copies of the Reply Comments of Local 1-2, Utility Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO and
Locals 83, 97 and 503, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers in the above proceeding
pursuant to the New York Public Service Commission’s Ruling Establishing Comment Procedures (Issued
June 19, 2003) and Further Ruling Concerning Schedule and Procedure (Issued September 19, 2003).
Respectfully submitted,
Richard J. Koda, Principal
Consultant to Utility Workers Union of
America, AFL-CIO, Local 1-2 &
International Brotherhood of Electrical
Workers, Locals 83, 97 and 503
c:
Active Party List as of August 27, 2003 via e-mail
Emanuel Hellen, President
Utility Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO, Local 1-2
Danny Addy, President/Business Manager/Financial Secretary
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 83
Thomas J. Primero, President/Business Manager/Financial Secretary
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 97
Robert V. Citrolo, President/Business Manager/Financial Secretary
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 503
BEFORE THE
STATE OF NEW YORK PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION
Proceeding on Motion of the Commission Regarding
)
a Retail Renewable Portfolio Standard
)
Case 03-E-0188
)
Reply Comments of Local 1-2, Utility Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO and Locals 83, 97,
and 503 International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
Introduction
The following reply comments are made on behalf of Local 1-2, Utility Workers Union of
America, AFL-CIO and Locals 83, 97 and 503 International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
(collectively "Local Unions") that represent over 18,000 utility workers of which approximately 2,450
are directly involved in the electric energy generation process in the State of New York.
These reply comments which appear below supplement the preliminary comments filed by the
Local Unions on or about March 28, 2003 in this proceeding and the initial comments filed of the Local
Unions filed on or about September 26, 2003.
They reflect the Local Unions’ response to parties initial
comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 regarding a retail portfolio standard for electric energy
retailed in the State of New York pursuant to the New York Public Service Commission’s
(“Commission’s”) Ruling Establishing Comment Procedures (Issued June 19, 2003) and Further
Ruling Concerning Schedule and Procedure (Issued September 19, 2003).
I.
Summary
The Local Unions continue to be concerned with maintaining New York's high quality electric
system in a cost efficient and professional manner.
Most parties agree that the cost to ratepayers will
be significant.
The issue of reliability of the electric system in New York as the result of an implementation of
an RPS in New York, given the potential and variable unavailability of power generated by certain
renewables, has not yet been adequately addressed in this proceeding.
Several parties have cited the
study which is being undertaken by the New York Independent System Operator (“NYISO”) and the
New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (“NYSERDA”) regarding the impact
on the New York electric system of adding intermittent generators on a much larger scale than
presently exists on the grid as discussed in detail in these reply comments.
Also, the Local Unions continue to have concerns about how the implementation of the
proposed RPS in New York would affect the current jobs at many of the fossil fuel plants presently
serving New York with reasonably priced power in a period of economic uncertainty.
Several
parties expressed concern regarding jobs and economic development opportunities.
It remains
2
important that an increase in jobs in one portion of the state’s economy do not sacrifice jobs that are
viable in another sector of the state’s economy, specifically viable jobs in the present electric energy
generating sector.
The Local Unions continue to recommend that the Commission have a thorough understanding
of all relevant issues and related information referenced by the parties and the final results of the
study being currently undertaken by NYISO/NYSERDA before it renders any final decision on a
renewable portfolio standard in New York.
II. Reply on Revised Working Objectives
Multiple Intervenors (“MI”) proposes that the Diversity objective be changed to a Reliability
objective since “reliability should be the goal
.
1
The Local Unions agree with this proposed change
for the reasons cited by MI.
Similarly, MI proposes that the Economic Benefits objective be
broadened to consider: “the State’s economy as a whole, consistent with the State’s economic
development policies and initiatives
.
2
The Local Unions believe that this recommended revision is
important as it attempts place all segments of the New York economy on an equal footing which is
appropriate and consistent with the Local Unions’ position that an increase in jobs in one portion of
the state’s economy should not sacrifice jobs that are viable in another sector of the state’s economy,
specifically viable jobs in the present electric energy generating sector.
New York City also believes
that a RPS should be implemented without any unnecessary dislocation or hardship on any region in
the State or group of utility customers.
3
The Local Unions believe that load-serving entity
employees, as stakeholders,
s
hould also be included in the groups referenced by New York City.
The Empire State Forest Products Association, with regard to Revised Work Objectives,
concluded that “[T]hese objectives should be equally weighted in terms of importance.”
4
The Local
Unions agree with that conclusion which is consistent with the Local Unions’ position that the
numerical sequence of items under Revised Working Objectives should not signify any order of
priority or weight to be considered in evaluating issues dealing with establishing a RPS in New
York.
All elements adopted by the Commission as Work Objectives should inform and constrain the
development of an RPS in New York in equal measure.
III.
Eligibility
Several commentators recommended that broad eligibility criteria be adopted by the Commission
in establishing an RPS.
5
The Local Unions agree that broad eligibility criteria would increase the
number of participating generators and tend to keep the cost of a RPS as low as possible.
Many and diverse parties’ comments recommended that tiers should not be adopted by the
1
Comments of Multiple Intervenors filed on or about September 26, 2003 at 8-11.
2
Ibid. at 11-20.
3
Comments of New York City filed on or about September 26, 2003 at 6.
4
Final Comments of Empire State Forest Products Association filed on or about September 26, 2003 at 1.
5
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by ConEdison Solutions at 3; Amerada Hess at 7 & 14; Long Island
Power Authority at 1; New York Municipals at 9; and, Conservation Services Group at 6.
3
Commission
6
and a good number reason that no tiers should be used in the RPS to keep the cost of
implementation as low as possible.
Keeping the RPS costs as low as possible is consistent with the
Local Unions’ position that renewables should compete on price to enter the standard portfolio.
Several commentators, in addition to the Local Unions, believe that RPS energy must be
delivered to New York.
7
This is an important parameter of a RPS and exceptions should be made
only if they provide an overriding and unquestionable benefit to the public interest of all New Yorkers.
The criteria for such overriding and unquestionable benefit exceptions should be established by the
Commission prior to the effective date of any RPS adopted by the Commissi
o
n.
Amerada Hess Corporation believes that it is acceptable to allow green market premium
products to be counted as renewable generation for RPS purposes.
8
This is consistent with the Local
Unions’ belief that renewable portfolio standard projects should not be mutually exclusive with green
marketing programs, but contrary to the comments of DPS Staff, NY Consumer Protection Board and
RETEC
9
.
The Local Unions disagree with the DPS Staff and the RETEC approach as being
inappropriately restrictive and more costly than necessary.
If a green market product is not eligible for
RPS then it should not count, but if it is eligible, it should count toward the 25% overall goal being
considered in this proceeding.
Several of the commentators propose that “behind the meter” applications be eligible for RPS
and be included in the statistics when determining when the renewable percentage goal is reached.
1
0
The Local Unions favor this inclusion if a reasonably straight-forward and accurate method would
be used to verify and track the applicable Kwh that would be involved.
Several commentators are concerned with the amount of emissions that a proposed
generating source for RPS eligibility would emit.
1
1
If a primary concern of establishing a RPS in
New York is to reduce emissions, than it is logical and fair to include emission reducing
technologies, as applied to fossil fired plants, as a technology with which the RPS generators would
have to compete in any analysis which would determine the most appropriate generating assets to be
used in New York.
6
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by KeySpan Corporation at 16; Tannery Island et. al. at 5; New York
Consumer Protection Board at 10; Empire State Forest Products Association at 3; New York Power Authority at 7;
County of Westchester at 10; Conservation Services Group at 6; MI at 21 & 37-38; AES New York, LLC at 1 & 3;
Independent Power Producers of New York at 2; Nucor Steel Auburn at 6; RETEC at 34; and Joint Utilities
a
t
2
8.
7
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by New York Power Authority at 12; Ridgewood Renewable Power a
t
2 & 13; County of Westchester at 9; NY Attorney General at 59;
a
n
d, New York Department of Public Service Staff at
24-25.
8
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by Amerada Hess Corporation at 13-14.
9
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by New York Department of Public Service Staff at 30; New York
Consumer Protection Board at 6;
a
n
d, RETEC at 69.
1
0
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by KeySpan Corporation at 8; Long Island Power Authority at 5;
New York Power Authority at 7; Conservation Services Group at 10
;
a
n
d
,
R
E
T
E
C
a
t
3
1-
3
3.
1
1
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by NY CPB at 8 and NY DEC at 6-9.
4
IV.
Overall RPS Structure
Several of the commen
t
ators recommend the centralized procurement structure.
1
2
The Local
Unions also prefer a central structure because such a structure appears to be more easily
administered and would be more efficient than an individual procurement structure. Although the
Local Unions and several other parties recommend a NYISO Option, the NYISO has indicated that it
can not perform such a function.
1
3
Therefore, the Local Unions recommend a Centralized State
Agency Option administered by NYSERDA because of its history in administering similar projects
in New York in a professional and efficient manner.
Regarding participation in the RPS and compliance/payment related to such participation,
several commentators propose that certain entities be excluded from participation and/or
compliance/payment.
1
4
The opposite position has been taken by the New York Attorney General
(“AG”).
1
5
The Local Unions agree with the AG regarding 100% participation so that there is no cost
shifting as it is alleged that all will benefit from the incremental increase to achieve a 25% renewable
standard.
In their initial comments, the Local Unions recommended that load servicing entities with
n
o
n-jurisdictional entities such as NYPA and LIPA participate on a quasi-mandatory basis.
These
n
o
n-jurisdictional entities would be required to participate unless they file a detailed explanation of
why it would be in the public interest for them not to participate.
None of the arguments offered in
the comments of the parties seeking exclusion are persuasive.
Nowhere in their comments have any
of the parties seeking exclusion referenced their beneficial below market rates being obtained by
their participation in state agency projects.
For those parties to seek exclusion from the RPS
requirements is disingenuous.
V.
Credit Trading
Tannery Island, et.al. commented that trading should allow for the trading of all renewable
attributes, e.g.
,
N
O
X
allowances, and should ensure that the benefits of those trades go to the
generator and not the monopolies holding the wires.
1
6
The NYISO supports the development of a
trading system similar to that developed for New England which would track a variety of generation
attributes.
1
7
It is becoming clear that a comprehensive trading system is appropriate to establish a market for
energy components, such as renewables, so that market values of the attributes pertaining to energy
generated/consumed in New York would be “transparent” (visible to all) which may be used as an aid
in determining the worth of the specific energy components.
The Local Unions agree with NYISO in
supporting an attributes trading system similar to that developed for New England.
1
2
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by Select Energy New York, Inc. at 1; Small Customer Marketing
Coalition at 3 & 6-11; KeySpan Corporation at 17
;
ConEdison Solutions at 1;
A
m
e
r
a
d
a
H
e
s
s
a
t
2, 5 & 9; NYSERDA
a
t
4-6; New York Attorney General at 6; Ridgewood Renewable Power at 1-2 & 10; County of Westchester at 7; City of
New York at 9-10; and, Joint Utilities at 15.
1
3
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by NYISO at 6.
1
4
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by Amerada Hess at 2; NYPA at 3 & 8-10; New York Municipals at
3; and, MI at 3 & 25-
2
6.
1
5
Comments filed on or about September 26
,
2
0
0
3
b
y
A
G
a
t
1
6
.
1
6
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by Tannery Island, et.al. at 6.
1
7
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by NYISO at 7.
5
Also, the Local Unions see a positive impact if the Commission’s Environmental Disclosure Label
Program were expanded to include a more comprehensive “attributes” labeling program which would
incorporate the elements of a system similar to the one developed for New England.
VI.
Cost and Benefit Considerations
Several of the commentators have indicated that the Staff Cost Study raises questions which
must be answered.
1
8
Reliant Resources, Inc. maintains that the Staff Cost Study does not fully
consider the cost impacts of the RPS, neglecting certain operational, market and reliability issues.
NYPA is concerned with errors and inconsistencies in the Staff Cost Study.
NYISO is concerned
with the capacity additions utilized in the Staff Study as well as the modeling changes embedded in
the study.
In addition to the above, MI contends that there are significant costs involving
transmission needs, congestion and NYISO administration which have not been studied and, in
addition, the DPS/NYSERDA study indicates that it systematically understates the cost of a RPS to
consumers.
1
9
IPPNY contends that “[
A]ssumptions made in the Department of Public Service staff’s
Cost Study Report raise reliability and accuracy issues that warrant further review before cost
impacts can be adequately assessed
.
2
0
The above commentators counter the support of the Staff
Cost Study given by the New York Consumer Protection Board.
2
1
The Staff Cost Study as well as the various studies brought to the parties and the Commission’s
attention by the commentators
2
2
need to be further assessed and evaluated as to their assumptions,
projections and estimates to ensure that the information used is appropriate.
VII.
Other Issues
1.
Whether the RPS Should be Manda
t
o
r
y
A question has been raised by ConEdison Solutions regarding whether the PRS should be
mandatory.
2
3
The Local Unions tend to agree with ConEdison Solutions that continued
encouragement of voluntary procurement by retail customers and the establishment of a
certificates-based accounting and verification system to enable renewable products to be traded
across state boundaries would be preferable to a mandatory system.
MI agrees that New York
should not mandate a RPS.
2
4
That being said, however, the Local Unions firmly believe that if a
mandatory system is adopted by the Commission, their must be 100% participation by all load
serving entities in New York.
1
8
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by Reliant Resources, Inc. at 2 & 6-
7
;
N
Y
P
A
a
t
1
3-
1
4; and NYISO at
17-
1
9.
1
9
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by MI at 42, 44 & 47.
2
0
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by IPPNY at 3 & 15-20.
2
1
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by NY CPB at 3 & 21-25.
2
2
Including but not limited to Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by RETEC at Appendix H & I and
UWUA-
I
B
E
W
a
t
5-6.
2
3
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by ConEdison Solutions at 1.
2
4
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by MI at 53.
6
2.
Whether the RPS Should be Implemented at This Time
Several of the commentators contend that the implementation of a RPS in New York be
delayed.
2
5
As MI points out: “prior to adoption of a RPS, the Commission should order hearings
at which experts can be cross-examined”
2
6
AES-NY, LLC contends that “prior to any major
policy decisions in this proceeding, a full evaluation of reliability impacts must be completed.”
2
7
Empire State Development takes a position that “[F]inal cost estimates for reliability
requirements and the interconnection of renewable energy projects must be included in the
PSC’s economic modeling for the RPS to determine impacts on electricity prices for
consumers.”
2
8
The Local Unions agree with the assessments of the above commentators.
There
is an overwhelming amount of information pertaining to the establishment of a RPS in New
York that has not been determined, evaluated and adequately tested contrary to the view of the
AG
2
9
which the Local Unions believe is in error.
RETEC argues that the RPS proceeding is not the forum for system reliability issues to be
determined.
3
0
The fact remains that the implementation of a RPS would have an effect on the
reliability of the electric system in New York.
To address a RPS reliability issue that may have
inimical impacts on that system after the RPS is implemented would be tantamount to attempting
to close the barn door after the horses have run out of the barn. The safety and reliability of the
electric system in New York is paramount, and must be thoroughly considered with regard to the
significant increase in renewable facilities that a RPS would entail.
In addition, the further into the future an RPS implementation is initiated, the lower the cost
of such a program would likely be, as one commentator anticipates the cost of renewables
continuing to come down.
3
1
In its discussion of “Next Steps,” RETEC presses for a quick resolution to this proceeding.
3
2
The Local Unions believe that if the Commission were to rush to judgment in this proceeding,
the result would be similar to what happened in New York as a result of the infamous 6¢/Kwh
purchase law.
2
5
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by Reliant Resources, Inc. at 2-3; MI at 2 & 52;
2
6
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by MI at 43.
2
7
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by AES-NY, LLC at 1.
2
8
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by Empire State Development at 2.
2
9
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by AG at 63-66.
3
0
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by RETEC at 66.
3
1
Ibid. at 13.
3
2
Ibid. at 71-72.
7
3.
Monitoring and Review of the RPS
Several of the commentators recommend that the Commission monitor, review and/or true-
up the implementation and performance of the RPS standard on a periodic basis.
3
3
The Local
Unions agree that monitoring, reviewing and adjusting on a periodic basis, preferably on an
annual basis, makes the most sense.
This is so especially given the present incomplete record
and one which will undoubtedly result, if the Commission is unable or unwilling to extend the
schedule that has been set in this proceeding.
However, the Local Unions take issue with the criteria bounding Target Adjustment
mechanism proposed by RETEC.
Specifically, in truing up the MWhs of renewables required in
the RPS, it is RETEC’s position that the MWhs should never decrease.
3
4
This recommendation
of RETEC defeats the purpose of a true-up and should not be adopted; otherwise, why have a
true-up at all?
VIII.
Conclusion
The Local Unions appreciate the opportunity to provide the Commission with their reply
comments and concerns as discussed above.
The Local Unions continue to be significantly concerned
with the potential cost to ratepayers of increasing the level of renewables in New York and the potential
negative effects this implementation would have on jobs in the present electric energy generating sector
of the New York economy.
The Local Unions are also concerned about any diminution in the
reliability of the electric system resulting from any RPS that may be adopted.
The Local Unions recommend that if a RPS is established, that it is implemented using a least
cost approach as recommended in the comments above.
Also, it is recommended that renewable
energy technologies be evaluated on a level assessment field against other technologies that would
provide similar benefits of generation diversity, environmental improvement, economic efficiency,
competitive neutrality and administrative fairness consistent with the revised working objectives to
be adopted in this proceeding.
3
3
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by Small Customer Marketer Coalition at 1
2-13; KeySpan
Corporation at 9; ConEdison Solutions at 5; Amerada Hess at 7; Union of Concern Scientists at 3;
3
4
Comments filed on or about September 26, 2003 by RETEC at 12.
8
The above issues are important to the Local Unions, affect the public interest.
The Local Unions
request that these issues be thoughtfully considered by the Commission before it makes any policy
decisions regarding the adoption of any RPS.
Dated: October 31, 2003
Ridgefield, Connecticut
Respectfully Submitted,
Richard J. Koda, Principal
KODA CONSULTING, Inc.
409 Main Street
Ridgefield, Connecticut
06877-4511
(203) 438-9045
Consultant to Utility Workers Union of America,
AFL-CIO, Local 1-2 and International Brotherhood
of Electrical Workers, Locals 83, 97 and 503.
To:
Honorable Eleanor Stein, Administrative Law Judge
cc:
Active Party List as of 8-27-03
Emanuel Hellen, President, UWUA, AFL-CIO, Local 1-2
Danny E. Addy, President/Business Manager/Financial Secretary, IBEW, Local 83
Thomas J. Primero, President/Business Manager/Financial Secretary, IBEW, Local 97
Robert V. Citrolo, President/Business Manager/Financial Secretary, IBEW, Local 503