Photovoltaic system and wind turbine

Report | 2021

Procuring Large-Scale Renewables through Aggregation: A Guide for Local Governments

By Mia RebackAlisa PetersenStephen AbbottYuning Liu
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Local governments across the United States are setting ambitious goals to transition to renewable energy. Since most municipalities cannot supply 100 percent of their electricity needs with on-site supply alone, they often look to purchase off-site renewable energy. One approach to do this that can provide numerous benefits is buyer-led aggregation.

Aggregation is an innovative yet underutilized approach in which two or more buyers collaborate to purchase energy from a large-scale generation facility. Aggregated deals present several opportunities for buyers:

  • They allow buyers to support new renewable energy projects that meet their specific needs.
  • They help grow the demand for renewable energy by enrolling participants who lack the resources or electricity demand to sign large-scale contracts on their own.
  • Buyers can collectively negotiate for better contract terms and prices.

This guide outlines how local governments can pursue buyer-led aggregated PPAs for utility-scale renewable projects. It includes the benefits of aggregation, off-site procurement options available to aggregation groups, and case studies of five successful aggregated renewables procurements. The guide also presents a seven-step process to guide local governments to pursue an aggregated procurement.

CRA Exhibit 4
The Buyer-Led Aggregation Process