Aug. 12, 2003
PRC Approves PNM Renewable Energy Program
Albuquerque: The state Public Regulation Commission today unanimously approved PNM's renewable energy program, setting the stage for the company to offer renewable energy to customers beginning Oct. 1.
The program PNM Sky Blue will give PNM electric customers the option to purchase renewable energy for a small, voluntary, monthly premium.
Residential customers will be able to participate for as little as $1.80 per month, with no contract requirement for participation.
"PNM Sky Blue is designed to give customers committed to the environment and quality of life an easy and affordable way to demonstrate that commitment," said Joanne Reuter, PNM vice president of regulatory affairs.
Customers will be able to sign up by phone, on PNM.com or at any PNM customer service office within the company's electric service territory.
Electricity for the program will come from the New Mexico
Wind Energy Center, a 204-megawatt facility near House, N.M.,
that will be dedicated Oct. 1. The wind center the
world's third largest can produce enough power to supply
94,000 average-sized New Mexico homes.
Under the plan, residential customers and small businesses can sign up for renewable energy by choosing one of two packages, each based on a renewable energy premium of 1.8 cents per kilowatt-hour.
The first option would allow customers to purchase renewable energy in 100-kilowatt-hour blocks, at a cost of $1.80 for each block. A customer could choose one, two or more blocks per month. This means the customer would pay a fixed rate for renewable energy every month, regardless of changes to monthly electric consumption.
The second option would allow customers the fullest level of participation, setting the renewable energy they purchase at 90 percent of monthly electric consumption. With this package, the amount a customer pays for renewable energy each month would go up or down depending on monthly consumption.
Larger business customers may also participate in the program, by paying the 1.8 cent-per-kilowatt-hour rate for renewable energy. They would purchase the energy as a proportion of their overall electric usage rather than in blocks. A large business could select to purchase renewable energy equal to 1 percent, 2 percent, 3 percent, 5 percent, 10 percent, 50 percent or 90 percent of its overall electric monthly usage.
The renewable premium will show up as a separate line item on the monthly bills of those customers who choose to participate and is in addition to regular PNM charges for electricity.
PNM is the principal subsidiary of PNM Resources, an energy holding company based in Albuquerque. PNM provides natural gas service to 441,000 gas customers and electric utility service to 385,000 customers in New Mexico. The company also sells power on the wholesale market in the Western U.S. PNM Resources stock is traded primarily on the NYSE under the symbol PNM.