US Congress receives a framework for climate legislation


A new whitepaper comprising recommendations on how to expand the clean energy market has been submitted to the US House Energy and Commerce Committee.

The whitepaper has been authored by Brattle and will be used by the Committee to inform its development of comprehensive climate legislation.

The recommendations included in the whitepaper have previously been used to come up with draft climate legislation in Illinois.

The whitepaper recommends:

  • Maximising competition within the energy industry
  • Incorporating a downward-sloping demand curve to achieve clean energy goals sooner if resources are available at an affordable price
  • Using auctions to transparently award winners at competitive prices
  • Introducing a multi-year energy price lock to enable financing of new resources.
  • Paying firms for reducing their carbon emissions.

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By adopting the recommendations, Brattle claims the US will be able to resolve tensions between wholesale markets and environmental goals. The framework values environmental attributes in a way that is complementary to and consistent with existing energy, capacity, and ancillary service markets. 

“When implemented, the FCEM would allow all interested purchasers of clean energy, including governments, retail electricity suppliers, and end-users, to work with clean energy suppliers to accomplish the clean energy goals,” noted Brattle Principal and white paper co-author Kathleen Spees. “This proposal can also be implemented relatively quickly as a much-needed complement to existing electricity markets.”

“At present, 29 states and countless cities have passed laws or adopted clean energy standards for the power sector. Six of those states and 133 of those cities have announced their intention to completely erase carbon emissions from the power sector over the next two to three decades. Many individual companies, like NRG, have also established corporate goals to reduce their associated carbon emissions,” said Travis Kavulla, Vice President of Regulatory Affairs at NRG, in the company’s letter to Congress. “Now that those goals have been set, the question is how to ensure the tools are in place to achieve those goals quickly and affordably. We propose such a tool in the FCEM.”

The whitepaper is available for download here