(A) Initial benchmark report. Within sixty days of the effective date of this rule, each electric utility shall file an initial benchmark report with the commission that identifies the following information:
(1) The energy and demand baselines for kilowatt-hour sales and kilowatt demand for the reporting year; including a description of the method of calculating the baseline, with supporting data.
(2) The applicable statutory benchmarks for energy savings and electric utility peak-demand reduction.
(B) An electric utility may file an application to adjust its sales and/or demand baseline.
The baseline shall be normalized for weather and for changes in numbers of customers, sales, and peak demand to the extent such changes are outside the control of the electric utility. The electric utility shall include in its application all assumptions, rationales, and calculations, and shall propose methodologies and practices to be used in any proposed adjustments or normalizations. To the extent approved by the commission, normalizations for weather, changes in numbers of customers, sales, and peak demand shall be consistently applied from year to year.
(C) Portfolio status report. By March fifteenth of each year, each electric utility shall file a portfolio status report addressing the performance of all approved energy efficiency and peak-demand reduction programs in its program portfolio plan over the previous calendar year which includes, at a minimum, the following information:
(1) Compliance demonstration. Each electric utility shall include a section in its portfolio status report detailing its achieved energy savings, achieved demand reductions, and the expected demand reductions that its programs were reasonably designed to achieve, relative to its corresponding baselines. At a minimum, this section of the portfolio status report shall include each of the following:
(a) An update to its benchmark report.
(b) A comparison with the applicable benchmark of actual energy savings and peak-demand reductions achieved by electric utility programs.
(c) An affidavit as to whether the reported performance complies with the statutory benchmarks.
(2) Program performance assessment. Each electric utility shall include a section in its portfolio status report demonstrating whether it has successfully implemented the energy efficiency and demand-reduction programs approved in its program portfolio plan. At a minimum, this section of the annual portfolio status report shall include each of the following:
(a) A description of each approved energy efficiency or peak-demand reduction program implemented in the previous calendar year including:
(i) The key activities undertaken in each program, the number and type of participants, a comparison of the forecasted savings to the verified savings achieved by such program, the magnitude of anticipated savings, and a trend analysis of how anticipated savings will be realized over the life of the program.
(ii) All energy savings counted toward the applicable benchmark as a result of energy efficiency improvements implemented by mercantile customers and committed to the electric utility.
(iii) All peak-demand reductions counted toward the applicable benchmark as a result of energy efficiency improvements, demand response, or demand reduction improvements implemented by mercantile customers and committed to the electric utility.
(iv) A description of all transmission and distribution infrastructure improvements made by the electric utility that reduce line losses to the extent the reduction in line losses has been applied to meet the applicable benchmarks with a calculation and description of the net impact of such improvements on losses.
(b) An evaluation, measurement, and verification report that documents the energy savings and peak-demand reduction values and the cost-effectiveness of each energy efficiency and demand-side management program reported in the electric utility's portfolio status report. Such report shall include documentation of any process evaluations and expenditures, measured and verified savings, and cost-effectiveness of each program. Measurement and verification processes shall confirm that the measures were actually installed, the installation meets reasonable quality standards, and the measures are operating correctly and are expected to generate the predicted savings. Upon commission order, the staff may publish guidelines for program measurement and verification.
(c) A recommendation for whether each program should be continued, modified, or eliminated. The electric utility may propose alternative programs to replace eliminated programs, taking into account the overall balance of programming in its program portfolio plan. The electric utility shall describe any alternate program or program modification by providing at least the information required for proposed programs in its program portfolio plan pursuant to this chapter. An electric utility may seek written staff approval to reallocate funds between programs serving the same customer class at any time, provided that the reallocation supports the goals of its approved program portfolio plan and is limited to no more than twenty-five per cent of the funds available for programs serving that customer class. In addition, an electric utility may change its program mix or budget allocations at any time, as long as it provides notice to all parties in the proceeding in which the program portfolio plan was approved.
(D) Independent program evaluator report. Subsequent to the filing of the electric utility's portfolio status report, the independent program evaluator will prepare and file a report of the independent program evaluator's activities and conclusions in monitoring, verifying, and evaluating the energy savings and peak-demand reductions resulting from the electric utility programs and mercantile customer activities. The report shall also include the verification and evaluation, through the use of due-diligence techniques including project inspections, of the electric utility's evaluation, measurement, and verification report.
(E) An electric utility may satisfy its peak-demand reduction benchmarks through a combination of energy efficiency and peak-demand response programs implemented by electric utilities and/or programs implemented on mercantile customer sites where the mercantile program is committed to the electric utility.
(1) For energy efficiency programs, an electric utility may count the programs' effects resulting in coincident peak-demand savings.
(2) For demand response programs, an electric utility may count demand reductions towards satisfying some or all of the peak-demand reduction benchmarks by demonstrating that either the electric utility has reduced its actual peak demand, or has the capability to reduce its peak demand and such capability is created under either of the following circumstances:
(a) A peak-demand reduction program meets the requirements to be counted as a capacity resource under the tariff of a regional transmission organization approved by the federal energy regulatory commission.
(b) A peak-demand reduction program equivalent to a regional transmission organization program, which has been approved by this commission.
(F) A mercantile customer's energy savings and peak-demand reductions shall be measured by including the effects of all demand-response programs of the mercantile customer and all mercantile customer-sited energy efficiency and peak-demand reduction programs. A mercantile customer's energy savings and peak-demand reductions shall be presumed to be the effect of a demand response, energy efficiency, or peak-demand reduction program to the extent they involve the early retirement of fully functioning equipment, or the installation of new equipment that achieves reductions in energy use and peak demand that exceed the reductions that would have occurred had the customer used standard new equipment or practices where practicable. Electric utilities may make an alternative demonstration that mercantile customer energy savings or peak demand reductions are effects of such a program.
(G) A mercantile customer may file, either individually or jointly with an electric utility, an application to commit the customer's demand reduction, demand response, or energy efficiency programs for integration with the electric utility's demand reduction, demand response, and energy efficiency programs, pursuant to division (A)(2)(d) of section 4928.66 of the Revised Code. Such application shall:
(1) Address coordination requirements between the electric utility and the mercantile customer with regard to voluntary reductions in load by the mercantile customer, which are not part of an electric utility program, including specific communication procedures.
(2) Grant permission to the electric utility and staff to measure and verify energy savings and/or peak-demand reductions resulting from customer-sited projects and resources.
(3) Identify all consequences of noncompliance by the customer with the terms of the commitment.
(4) Include a copy of the formal declaration or agreement that commits the mercantile customer's programs for integration, including any requirement that the electric utility will treat the customer's information as confidential and will not disclose such information except under an appropriate protective agreement or a protective order issued by the commission pursuant to rule 4901-1-24 of the Administrative Code.
(5) Include a description of all methodologies, protocols, and practices used or proposed to be used in measuring and verifying program results, and identify and explain all deviations from any program measurement and verification guidelines that may be published by the commission.
(H) An electric utility shall not count in meeting any statutory benchmark the adoption of measures that are required to comply with energy performance standards set by law or regulation, including but not limited to, those embodied in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, or an applicable building code.
(I) Benchmarks not reasonably achievable. If an electric utility determines that it is unable to meet a benchmark due to regulatory, economic, or technological reasons beyond its reasonable control, the electric utility may file an application to amend its benchmarks. To the extent that forecasted peak demand and peak prices do not materialize for economic reasons, the electric utility may be granted a waiver of its benchmark for the difference between actual performance and expected performance of demand response programs.
(J) Benchmarks not reasonably achievable. If an electric utility determines that it is unable to meet a benchmark due to regulatory, economic, or technological reasons beyond its reasonable control, the electric utility may file an application to amend its benchmarks. To the extent that forecasted peak demand and peak prices do not materialize for economic reasons, the electric utility may be granted a waiver of its benchmark for the difference between the actual and expected performance of demand response programs. In any such application, the electric utility shall demonstrate that it has exhausted all reasonable compliance options.