ORS 757.396¹
Participating large natural gas utilities
  • portfolio targets
  • ratemaking mechanisms
  • qualified investments

(1) A large natural gas utility that participates in the large renewable natural gas program adopted by rule by the Public Utility Commission under ORS 757.394 (Renewable natural gas programs) (1) may make qualified investments and procure renewable natural gas from third parties to meet the following portfolio targets for the percentage of gas purchased by the large natural gas utility for distribution to retail natural gas customers in Oregon that is renewable natural gas:

(a) In each of the calendar years 2020 through 2024, five percent may be renewable natural gas;

(b) In each of the calendar years 2025 through 2029, 10 percent may be renewable natural gas;

(c) In each of the calendar years 2030 through 2034, 15 percent may be renewable natural gas;

(d) In each of the calendar years 2035 through 2039, 20 percent may be renewable natural gas;

(e) In each of the calendar years 2040 through 2044, 25 percent may be renewable natural gas; and

(f) In each of the calendar years 2045 through 2050, 30 percent may be renewable natural gas.

(2) The commission shall adopt ratemaking mechanisms that ensure the recovery of all prudently incurred costs that contribute to the large natural gas utility’s meeting the targets set forth in subsection (1) of this section. Pursuant to the ratemaking mechanisms adopted under this subsection:

(a) Qualified investments and operating costs associated with qualified investments that contribute to the large natural gas utility meeting the targets set forth in subsection (1) of this section may be recovered by means of an automatic adjustment clause, as defined in ORS 757.210 (Hearing to establish new schedules).

(b) Costs of procurement of renewable natural gas from third parties that contribute to the large natural gas utility meeting the targets set forth in subsection (1) of this section may be recovered by means of an automatic adjustment clause, as defined in ORS 757.210 (Hearing to establish new schedules), or another recovery mechanism authorized by rule.

(3) When a large natural gas utility makes a qualified investment in the production of renewable natural gas, the costs associated with the qualified investment shall include the cost of capital established by the commission in the large natural gas utility’s most recent general rate case.

(4) Before making a qualified investment in biogas production that is upstream of conditioning equipment, pipeline interconnection or gas cleaning, a large natural gas utility shall engage in a competitive bidding process.

(5) If the large natural gas utility’s total incremental annual cost to meet the targets of the large renewable natural gas program exceeds five percent of the large natural gas utility’s total revenue requirement for an individual year, the large natural gas utility may no longer be authorized to make additional qualified investments under the large renewable natural gas program for that year without approval from the commission.

(6) The total incremental annual cost to meet the targets of the large renewable natural gas program must account for:

(a) Any value received by a large natural gas utility upon any resale of renewable natural gas, including any environmental credits that the renewable natural gas producer chooses to include with the sale of the renewable natural gas to the large natural gas utility; and

(b) Any savings achieved through avoidance of conventional gas purchases or development, such as avoided pipeline costs or carbon costs. [2019 c.541 §5]

Chapter 757

Notes of Decisions

Under regulatory scheme, Public Utility Commissioner has authority to promulgate rule limiting telephone company’s liability for directory listing errors or omissions. Garrison v. Pacific NW Bell, 45 Or App 523, 608 P2d 1206 (1980)

Refund is proper exercise of Public Utility Commission’s general powers if refund (1) is based only on in­for­ma­­tion in existence at time of rate order for which refund is being made; (2) is not based on evalua­tion of public utility’s actual expenses or revenues; and (3) is not effectuated by offsetting future rates. Gearhart v. Public Utility Commission, 255 Or App 58, 299 P3d 533 (2013), aff’d 356 Or 216, 339 P3d 904 (2014)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Authority of Governor and Public Utility Commissioner to enter into binding agree­ments with respect to uniform curtail­ment plans, (1977) Vol 38, p 861

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 757—Utility Regulation Generally, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors757.­html (2019) (last ac­cessed May 16, 2020).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2019, Chapter 757, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano757.­html (2019) (last ac­cessed May 16, 2020).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent. Currency Information