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Western Climate Initiative Releases Comprehensive Program Design

August 2010 - The Western Climate Initiative (WCI) released a comprehensive program design, which includes recommendations regarding voluntary purchases and the role of renewable energy certificates (RECs). WCI includes 11 partner states and provinces and has a goal to reduce 2005 greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by 15 percent by 2020.

Similar to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) model rule, the WCI program design includes an optional mechanism that sets aside allowances to be retired in recognition of voluntary renewable energy purchases. It will be up to each WCI Partner jurisdiction to decide whether to adopt this provision.

The WCI program design also recommends that RECs have no compliance role in the WCI cap-and-trade program. In this way, RECs and GHG allowances would be separate markets, and complications from the overlap of the two regulatory regimes would be avoided. If renewable energy from outside the WCI region is imported into the region, WCI would not attribute a greenhouse gas emissions value to it, regardless of whether the associated environmental attributes had already been sold into the voluntary market or for state RPS compliance.

Additional Information - Design for the WCI Regional Program

Additional Information - Voluntary Renewable Energy Market: Issues and Recommendations



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