Voluntary Renewable Energy Procurement Programs in Regulated Utility Markets

James Hardison, Jenny Heeter, Samuel Koebrich, Bethany Speer

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


Multinational corporate electricity customers are increasingly purchasing renewable energy (RE) to fulfill international commitments, reduce supply chain emissions, limit environmental impact, and secure stable and affordable electricity. The potential scale of corporate RE purchasing has been estimated to be nearly 100 gigawatts and growing. However, many markets lack supportive enabling environments for corporations to access RE through on-site project development or private sector transactions. Utility green pricing and utility green tariff programs backed by Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) offer powerful market-based solutions to utilities, regulators and policymakers to provide customers with RE product options while providing revenue to support RE development. This report presents utilities, governments, policymakers, and corporate buyers with a primer on RECs and REC-based green procurement programs. It focuses primarily on RECs and green procurement programs as they apply to variations of traditionally regulated, voluntary RE markets, but it can offer insights into the basic operating principles of all REC-based programs.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages48
StatePublished - 2020

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-6A20-76927


  • corporate renewable energy procurement
  • EAC
  • GOO
  • market based machanisms
  • REC
  • REC tracking system
  • renewable energy certificates
  • utility green tariffs
  • utiliy green pricing


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