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The Renewables Obligation (Amendment) Order (Northern Ireland) 2011

Draft Legislation:

This is a draft item of legislation. This draft has since been made as a Northern Ireland Statutory Rule: The Renewables Obligation (Amendment) Order (Northern Ireland) 2011 No. 169

Citation, commencement, extent and interpretation

1.  (1)  This Order may be cited as the Renewables Obligation (Amendment) Order (Northern Ireland) 2011 and comes into operation on 1st April 2011.

(2) In this Order “the 2009 Order” means the Renewables Obligation Order (Northern Ireland) 2009.

Amendments to Article 55(F) of the Energy (Northern Ireland) Order 2003 (interpretation of Articles 52 to 55F)

2.  (1)  Article 55F(1) of the Energy (Northern Ireland) Order 2003 (Interpretation of Articles 52 to 55F) is amended as follows;

(2) After the definition of “banding provision” insert—

“bioliquid” has the meaning given by Article 2(h) of Directive 2009/28/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23rd April 2009 on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable resources;

(3) In the definition of “fossil fuel”, after “any substance” insert, “other than bioliquid”.

Amendments to Article 2 of the 2009 Order (interpretation)

3.  (1)  Article 2 of the 2009 Order is amended as follows.

(2) In paragraph (1) at the appropriate place in alphabetical order insert each of the following definitions, that is to say—

“biomaterial” means the biodegradable part of—

(a)

products, waste and residues of biological origin from agriculture (including vegetal and animal substances), forestry and related industries (including fisheries and aquaculture); and

(b)

industrial, commercial and municipal waste;”;

“fossil derived bioliquid” means bioliquid produced directly or indirectly from—

(a)

coal;

(b)

lignite;

(c)

natural gas (within the meaning of the Energy Act 1976(1));

(d)

crude liquid petroleum, or;

(e)

petroleum products (within the meaning of the Energy Act 1976);;

“greenhouse gas emission criteria” means the criteria set out in Schedule A1;

“land criteria” means the criteria set out in Schedule A2;;

MCS” means the Microgeneration Certification Scheme or equivalent schemes accredited under EN45011 which certify microgeneration products and installers in accordance with consistent standards;;

“Renewables Directive” means Directive 2009/28/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources, and in Schedules A1 and 3A to be construed as references to Annex 5 to the Directive as amended from time to time;; and

“sustainability information” means information submitted to the Authority by the operator of a generating station for the purpose of demonstrating that a bioliquid meets the greenhouse gas emission criteria and the land criteria;.

(3) In paragraph (1), for the definition of “total installed capacity”, substitute—

“total installed capacity” means—

(a)

in relation to a generating station, the maximum capacity at which the station could be operated for a sustained period without causing damage to it (assuming the source of power used by it to generate electricity was available to it without interruption);

(b)

in relation to a wind turbine, the maximum capacity at which the turbine could be operated for a sustained period without causing damage to it (assuming there was no interruption to the wind powering it);.

(4) In paragraph (2), after each reference to “waste” insert “, fossil derived bioliquid”.

(5) For paragraph (4) substitute—

(4) The fuels referred to in paragraph (3) are—

(a)fossil derived bioliquid;

(b)bioliquid (not being fossil derived bioliquid);

(c)biomass (not being bioliquid);

(d)waste which constitutes a renewable source (not being bioliquid or biomass);

(e)fossil fuel including waste (other than waste falling within sub-paragraphs (a) to (d))..

Amendments to Article 3 (waste as a renewable source)

4.  In Article 3(2) of the 2009 Order, for sub-paragraph (b) substitute—

(b)is—

(i)for any waste that is a fossil derived bioliquid, the energy content of the fossil fuel from which the fossil derived bioliquid is directly or indirectly produced expressed as a percentage of the energy content of that fossil derived bioliquid as a whole,

(ii)for all other waste, the energy content of the fossil fuel from which the waste is in part composed or derived expressed as a percentage of the energy content of that waste as a whole.

Amendment to Article 4 (biomass and fuels which are to be treated as biomass)

5.  In Article 4(4) of the 2009 Order after “not being waste” insert “or fossil derived bioliquid”.

Fossil derived bioliquid

6.  After Article 4 of the 2009 Order (biomass and fuels which are to be treated as biomass) insert—

Fossil derived bioliquid

4A.  (1)  For the purpose of this Order, fossil derived bioliquid is to be treated as being in part composed of (or in part derived from) fossil fuel.

(2) Where fossil derived bioliquid (not being waste) is used, whether on its own or not, to fuel a generating station, the proportion of fossil derived bioliquid which is to be treated as being composed of (or derived from) fossil fuel—

(a)is to be determined by the Authority, and

(b)is the energy content of the fossil fuel from which the fossil derived bioliquid is directly or indirectly derived expressed as a percentage of the energy content of the fossil derived bioliquid as a whole.

(3) It is for the operator of the generating station to demonstrate to the Authority’s satisfaction what proportion of the fossil derived bioliquid is to be treated as being composed of (or derived from) fossil fuel.

(4) When determining that proportion the Authority is entitled to have regard to any material (whether or not produced to it by the operator of the generating station) if, in its opinion, that material indicates what proportion of the fossil derived bioliquid is to be treated as being composed of (or derived from) fossil fuel..

Amendment to Article 18A (generating stations accredited for longer than 20 years)

7.  In Article 18A (5) of the 2009 Order, for “article” substitute “Article”.

Amendment to Article 22 (circumstances in which no NIROCs are to be issued in respect of electricity generated from renewable sources)

8.  In Article 22(1) of the 2009 Order, after every reference to “biomass” insert “or fossil derived bioliquid”.

Circumstances in which no NIROCs are to be issued in respect of electricity generated from bioliquid

9.  After Article 22 of the 2009 Order (circumstances in which no NIROCs are to be issued in respect of electricity generated from renewable sources) insert—

Circumstances in which no NIROCs are to be issued in respect of electricity generated from bioliquid

22A.  (1)  No NIROCs are to be issued in respect of any electricity generated by a generating station from bioliquid unless the bioliquid meets the greenhouse gas emission criteria and the land criteria.

(2) It is for the operator of the generating station to demonstrate to the Authority’s satisfaction that the bioliquid meets the greenhouse gas emission criteria and the land criteria.

(3) Where paragraph (4) applies to a consignment of bioliquid, mass balance system must be used for the purpose of demonstrating that bioliquid meets the greenhouse gas emission criteria and the land criteria.

(4) This paragraph applies to a consignment of bioliquid where—

(a)the consignment of bioliquid was withdrawn from a mixture containing consignments of bioliquid with differing sustainability profiles; or

(b)consignments of the biomaterial from which the consignment of bioliquid was made were withdrawn from a mixture containing consignments of biomaterial with differing sustainability profiles.

(5) For the purposes of paragraph (3), a mass balance system is a system which—

(a)provides for the sustainability profiles of the consignments of biomaterial or bioliquid added to a mixture to be attributed to the consignments withdrawn from that mixture; and

(b)requires the sustainability profiles attributed to the sum of all the consignments withdrawn from a mixture to be the same, and in the same quantities, as the sustainability profile of the sum of all the consignments added to that mixture.

(6) For the purposes of paragraphs (4) and (5)—

(a)the sustainability profile of a consignment of biomaterial is—

(i)information identifying the material of which the biomaterial is composed; and

(ii)information relating to the biomaterial to be used for the purpose of determining whether bioliquid made from the biomaterial meets the greenhouse gas emission criteria and the land criteria;

(b)the sustainability profile of a consignment of bioliquid is information identifying—

(i)the material of which the bioliquid is composed; and

(ii)the proportion that meets the greenhouse gas emission criteria and the land criteria.

Common agricultural policy requirements

22B.  No NIROCs are to be issued in respect of any electricity generated by a generating station from bioliquid if—

(a)the bioliquid is derived from biomaterial which—

(i)is of agricultural origin;

(ii)was cultivated in the EU; and

(iii)is not waste; and

(b)the Authority is satisfied that the biomaterial referred to in sub-paragraph (a) was—

(i)cultivated in a manner that breached a statutory management requirement identified in entries 1 to 5 and 9 of the list in Annex 2 to Council Regulation (EC) No 73/2009(2) (“the 2009 Regulation”); or

(ii)obtained from land which does not meet the minimum requirements for good agricultural and environmental condition defined pursuant to Article 6(1) of the 2009 Regulation(3)..

Amendments to Article 27 (microgenerators and qualifying small scale generators)

10.  For Article 27, 27A and 27B substitute—

Microgenerators and qualifying new small scale generators

27.  (1)  This Article applies to a generating station which—

(a)is an accredited microgenerator,

(b)has not had a total declared net capacity in excess of 50 kilowatts at any time after 31st March 2009, and

(c)is not a qualifying new onshore wind station or a qualifying new hydro station or a qualifying new solar photovoltaic station or a qualifying new anaerobic digestion station.

(2) The amount of electricity to be stated in each NIROC which is issued in respect of the electricity generated by a generating station to which this Article applies is ½ megawatt hour.

(3) In this Article and in Article 27A to 27C—

“qualifying new hydro station” means a hydro generating station which—

(a)

was first accredited after 31st March 2010, and

(b)

has not had a total declared net capacity in excess of 1 megawatt at any time after 31st March 2010;

“qualifying new onshore wind station” means a generating station which—

(a)

generates electricity from onshore wind,

(b)

was first accredited after 31st March 2010, and

(c)

has not had a declared net capacity in excess of 250 kilowatts at any time after 31st March 2010;

“qualifying new solar photovoltaic station”, means a generating station which—

(a)

generates electricity from the direct conversion of sunlight into electricity,

(b)

was first accredited after 31st March 2010, and

(c)

has not had a declared net capacity in excess of 50 kilowatts at any time after 31st March 2010.

“qualifying new anaerobic digestion”, means a generating station which—

(a)

generates electricity from gas formed by the anaerobic digestion of material which is neither sewage nor material in a landfill.

(b)

was first accredited on or after 1st April 2011, and

(c)

has not had a declared net capacity in excess of 5 megawatts at any time on or after 1st April 2011.

Qualifying new onshore wind stations and qualifying new solar photovoltaic stations

27A.  (1)  This Article applies to a generating station which is—

(a)a qualifying new onshore wind station; or

(b)a qualifying new solar photovoltaic station.

(2) The amount of electricity to be stated in each NIROC which is issued in respect of electricity generated by a generating station to which this Article applies is ¼ megawatt hour.

Qualifying new hydro stations

27B.  (1)  This Article applies to a generating station which is a qualifying new hydro station.

(2) The amount of electricity to be stated in each NIROC which is issued in respect of electricity generated by a generating station to which this Article applies is—

(a)in relation to a qualifying new hydro station which has not had a declared net capacity in excess of 20 kilowatts at any time after 31st March 2010, ¼ megawatt hour;

(b)in relation to a qualifying new hydro station which has had a declared net capacity in excess of 20 kilowatts but not in excess 250 kilowatts at any time after 31st March 2010, megawatt hour;

(c)in relation to a qualifying new hydro station which has had a declared net capacity in excess of 250 kilowatts at any time after 31st March 2010, ½ megawatt hour.

Qualifying new anaerobic digestion stations

27C.  (1)  This Article applies to a generating station which is a qualifying new anaerobic digestion station.

(2) The amount of electricity to be stated in each NIROC which is issued in respect of electricity generated by a generating station to which this Article applies is—

(a)in relation to a qualifying new anaerobic digestion station which has not had a declared net capacity in excess of 500 kilowatts at any time on or after 26th April 2010, megawatt hour;

(b)in relation to a qualifying new anaerobic digestion station which has had a declared net capacity in excess of 500 kilowatts at any time on or after 26th April 2010, megawatt hour.

Microgeneration Certification Scheme

27D.  (1)  This Article applies to a generating station which-

(a)is a microgenerator;

(b)was first accredited after 31st March 2011; and is

(c)an onshore wind station; or a solar photovoltaic station.

(2) Accreditation of a generating station to which this Article and either Article 27 or 27A applies is conditional upon the operator of the generating station providing to the Authority an MCS certificate which confirms that the plant or apparatus have been installed in compliance with MCS criteria..

Amendments to Article 29 (qualifying existing onshore wind stations, qualifying existing solar photovoltaic stations and qualifying existing hydro stations)

11.  After Article 29 insert—

Qualifying existing onshore wind stations and qualifying existing solar photovoltaic stations

29A.  (1)  This Article applies to a qualifying existing onshore wind station or a qualifying existing solar photovoltaic station.

(2) For the purposes of paragraph (1)

(a)“qualifying existing onshore wind station” means a generating station which—

(i)generates electricity from onshore wind,

(ii)was accredited on or before 31st March 2010, and

(iii)has not had a declared net capacity in excess of 250 kilowatts at any time after 31st March 2010;

(b)“qualifying existing solar photovoltaic station” means a generating station which—

(i)generates electricity from the direct conversion of sunlight into electricity,

(ii)was accredited on or before 31st March 2010, and

(iii)has not had a declared net capacity in excess of 50 kilowatts at any time after 31st March 2010;

(3) Subject to paragraph (4) Articles 25(4) and (5), 27 and 28 (as appropriate) shall apply for the purposes of determining the amount of electricity to be stated in each NIROC which is issued in respect of electricity generated by a generating station to which this Article applies.

(4) Where, at the time it generates electricity, to which a NIROC relates, the total installed capacity of a generating station to which this Article applies is greater than it was on 31st March 2010—

(a)the provisions referred to in paragraph (3) apply only in relation to NIROCs which are to be issued in respect of electricity generated using the station’s original capacity; and

(b)the amount of electricity to be stated in each NIROC which is issued in respect of electricity generated using the station’s additional capacity is megawatt hour.

(5) In this Article and Article 29B—

“additional capacity” means capacity which does not form part of the capacity of the station as at 31st March 2010

“original capacity” means, in the case of an existing generating station, the capacity of the station as accredited and any additional capacity which (in the Authority’s view) formed part of the station as at 31st March 2010.

(6) Where electricity generated by a generating station using additional capacity is not measured separately from electricity generated by it using its original capacity, the electricity generated by it which is to be treated (for the purposes of paragraphs (3) and (4)) as having been generated using the relevant additional capacity is the relevant percentage (the appropriate percentage for these purposes being the additional capacity of the station expressed as a percentage of the total installed capacity of the station as at the date of the generation of the electricity).

Qualifying existing hydro stations

29B.  (1)  This Article applies to a generating station which is a qualifying existing hydro station, that is to say; a hydro generating station which was accredited on or before 31st March 2010 and has not had a declared net capacity in excess of 1 megawatt at any time after 31st March 2010;

(2) Subject to paragraph (3) Articles 25(4) and (5), 27 and 28 (as appropriate) shall apply for the purposes of determining the amount of electricity to be stated in each NIROC which is issued in respect of electricity generated by a generating station to which this Article applies..

(3) Where, at the time it generates the electricity, the generating station’s total installed capacity is greater than it was on 31st March 2010—

(a)the provisions referred to in paragraph (2) apply only in relation to NIROCs which are to be issued in respect of electricity generated using the station’s original capacity; and

(b)the amount of electricity to be stated in each NIROC which is issued in respect of electricity generated using the station’s additional capacity is—

(i)in relation to additional capacity which, taken together with the original capacity, does not exceed 20 kilowatts, megawatt hour;

(ii)in relation to additional capacity which, taken together with the original capacity, exceeds 20 kilowatts but does not exceed 250 kilowatts, megawatt hour;

(iii)in relation to additional capacity which, taken together with the original capacity, exceeds 250 kilowatts, ½ megawatt hour.

(4) Where electricity generated by a generating station using additional capacity is not measured separately from electricity generated by it using its original capacity, the electricity generated by it which is to be treated (for the purposes of paragraphs (2) and (3)) as having been generated using the relevant additional capacity is the relevant percentage (the appropriate percentage for these purposes being the additional capacity of the station expressed as a percentage of the total installed capacity of the station as at the date of the generation of the electricity..

Amendments to Article 46 (information to be provided to the Authority where electricity is generated from biomass)

12.  (1)  Article 46 of the 2009 Order(4) is amended as follows.

(2) In the heading after “biomass” insert “or fossil derived bioliquid”.

(3) In paragraph (1)(a) after “other than” insert “waste, biomass wholly derived from waste,”.

(4) Omit paragraph (3)(f).

(5) At the end of paragraph (3)(j) omit “and”.

(6) At the end of paragraph (3)(k) for the full stop substitute “and”.

(7) After paragraph (3)(k) insert—

(1) where the biomass was not a bioliquid—

(i)the greenhouse gas emissions from the use of the biomass to generate one mega joule of electricity;

(ii)whether the biomass meets the land criteria;

(iii)where the greenhouse gas emissions from the use of the biomass to generate one mega joule of electricity are greater than 79.2 grams, the main reasons why biomass with lower greenhouse gas emissions was not used;

(iv)where the biomass does not meet the land criteria, the main reasons why biomass meeting the land criteria was not used; and

(v)where any of the information specified in paragraphs (i) and (ii) is not known-

(aa)the main reasons why that information is not known; and

(bb)the main reasons why biomass for which that information is known was not used..

(8) After paragraph (3) insert—

(3A) For the purposes of paragraph (3)(1), the operator of the generating station must calculate the greenhouse gas emissions using one of the following methods—

(a)the actual value method; or

(b)the default value method.

(3B) The default value method must not be used to calculate the greenhouse gas emissions from the use of biomass unless—

(a)the biomass is described in the first column of Part 2 of Schedule 3B; and

(b)in relation to the biomass, the result of the calculation in paragraph 7 of Part C of Annex 5 to the Renewables Directive is equal to, or less than, zero.

(3C) For the purposes of paragraph (3B)(b), paragraph 7 of Part C of Annex 5 to the Renewables Directive is to be read as if—

(a)for each reference to “biofuel” there was substituted “biomass”; and

(b)the words “or bioliquid” were omitted in each place in which those words occur..

(9) For paragraph (6) substitute—

(6) In this Article—

“actual value method” means the calculation method provided for in Schedule 3A;

“default value method” means the calculation method provided for in Part 1 of Schedule 3B; and

“environmental quality assurance scheme” means a voluntary scheme which establishes environmental or social standards in relation to the production of biomass or matter from which a biomass fuel is derived.

(7) References in this Article to biomass, other than in or for the purposes of paragraph (3)(l), include fossil derived bioliquid..

Bioliquid sustainability audit report

13.  After Article 46 of the 2009 Order, insert—

Bioliquid sustainability audit report

46A.  (1)  This Article applies to a generating station which generates electricity (wholly or partly) from bioliquid in respect of which the operator of the generating station has submitted sustainability information.

(2) In relation to each consignment of bioliquid used in a generating station to which this Article applies, the operator of the station must, by the 31st May immediately following the obligation period during which the bioliquid referred to in paragraph (1) is used (“the relevant date”), provide the Authority with a sustainability audit report meeting the requirements specified in paragraph (3).

(3) The requirements specified in this paragraph are that the sustainability audit report must—

(a)be prepared by a person who is not—

(i)the owner or operator of the generating station; or

(ii)a connected person, in relation to the owner or operator of the generating station;

(b)identify the systems used by the operator of the generating station to produce the relevant sustainability information and confirm that measures have been taken—

(i)to protect those systems against fraud; and

(ii)to ensure the information produced by those systems is accurate and reliable;

(c)evaluate the adequacy of the frequency and methodology of any sampling carried out for the purpose of obtaining or checking the data on which the operator relied in preparing the relevant sustainability information;

(d)evaluate the robustness of the data on which the operator relied in preparing the relevant sustainability information; and

(e)be prepared to an adequate standard.

(4) Subject to paragraph (5), it is for the operator of the generating station to demonstrate to the Authority’s satisfaction that the sustainability audit report was prepared to an adequate standard.

(5) A sustainability audit report shall be deemed to have been prepared to an adequate standard if it complies with the International Standard on Assurance Engagements 3000(2010 edition)(5) or equivalent.

(6) Where, in relation to bioliquid used in a generating station to which this Article applies, the operator of the station fails to provide the Authority with a sustainability audit report meeting the requirements specified in paragraph (3) by the relevant date, the Authority must, in relation to any NIROCs to which the operator would otherwise be entitled, postpone the issue of those NIROCs (up to the specified number) until such time as the sustainability audit report is provided.

(7) For the purposes of paragraph (6), the specified number is the number of NIROCs which the Authority has or estimates that it has or, but for this Article, would have issued in respect of the electricity generated by the bioliquid in relation to which a sustainability audit report meeting the requirements specified in paragraph (3) should have been provided.

(8) In this Article “relevant sustainability information” in relation to a consignment of bioliquid means the sustainability information submitted by the operator of the generating station in respect of the consignment..

Amendment to Article 49 (functions of the Authority)

14.  In Article 49 of the 2009 Order, after paragraph (1) insert—

(1A) The Authority must, as soon as reasonably practicable after each obligation period, forward to the Department a summary of the sustainability information submitted to it during that period..

Greenhouse gas emission saving criteria and land criteria

15.  Before Schedule 1 to the 2009 Order, insert the Schedules set out on Schedule 1 to this Order.

The 2009 Order: Schedule 2

16.  In Schedule 2 (electricity to be stated in NIROCs) after the title “PART 4” for “39” substitute “29”.

Methods for calculating emissions from the use of biomass

17.  After Schedule 3 to the 2009 Order insert the Schedules set out in Schedule 2 to the Order.

Transitionals

18.  Nothing in this Order is to affect—

(a)the issue and revocation of a renewables obligation certificate in respect of electricity generated before 1st April 2011, and anything which falls to be done or determined (whether by the Authority or some other person) in relation to such issue or revocation, under the 2009 Order;

(b)any obligations or requirements imposed on an operator of a generating station or some other person in respect of the obligation period ending on 31st March 2011, and anything which falls to be done or determined (whether by the generator or some other person) in relation to any such obligations and requirements, under the 2009 Order;

(c)any obligations and functions of the Authority in respect of that obligation period, and anything which falls to be done or determined (whether by the Authority or some other person) in relation to it, under the 2009 Order.

Sealed with the Official Seal of the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment

on

A senior officer of the

Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment

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