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2020 Compliance Year


This page includes information on the 2020 compliance year under the Clean Energy Standard (CES). It also includes REC and ZEC activities that affect LSEs during and after the 2020 compliance year, which differs for RECs and ZECs. Beginning April 1, 2020, there will be a new method for calculating an LSE’s initial ZEC obligation and how LSE’s remit ZEC obligation payments. See below for more information.

Renewable Energy Standard 2020 Compliance

RES 2020 Compliance Year Resources

2018 Tier 1 REC Sale Price: $17.01

2019 Tier 1 REC Sale Price: $22.43

2020 Tier 1 REC Sale Price:$22.09

2020 ACP Price: $24.30

The Renewable Energy Standard (RES) 2020 compliance year for Tier 1 RECs begins on January 1, 2020 and ends on December 31, 2020.

NYSERDA will continue to sell Tier 1 RECs to LSEs on a quarterly basis, as available. At the end of every quarter, NYSERDA will announce a sale of Tier 1 RECs. These sales will include 2020 Tier 1 RECs and any unpurchased Tier 1 RECs from 2018 and 2019.

Trading Period Date Range for Tier 1 REC Sale Announcement
Q1 March 31 – April 10, 2020
Q2 June 30 – July 10, 2020
Q3 September 30 – October 10, 2020
Q4 December 31, 2020 – January 10, 2021


The sale will conclude 21 days after each announcement.

NYSERDA will offer 2020 Tier 1 RECs for sale in the 2020 compliance year for $22.09/MWh. LSEs may be able to purchase 2018 and 2019 Tier 1 RECs during the 2020 compliance year if unpurchased 2018 and 2019 Tier 1 RECs are available. The price for 2018 Tier 1 RECs will remain $17.01/MWh and 2019 Tier 1 RECs will remain $22.43/MWh.

Please note that 2018 and 2019 Tier 1 RECs can be used for compliance in the 2020 compliance year.

If an LSE is unable to generate or purchase the necessary Tier 1 RECs, LSEs can fulfill their 2020 Tier 1 REC compliance by making an alternative compliance payment (ACP) to NYSERDA.

The 2020 ACP costs $24.30/MWh for each megawatt-hour of renewable energy an LSE is unable to generate or purchase the necessary Tier 1 RECs to meet its obligation. LSEs will have the option of making ACPs after NYSERDA and the LSEs have reconciled the 2020 RES compliance year REC obligations in 2021.

Additionally, any 2020 Tier 1 RECs that remain unpurchased after the end of the compliance year will be banked by NYSERDA and may be available for purchase in future compliance years.

ZEC 2020 Compliance


ZEC 2020 Compliance Year Resources

LSE ZEC Rate: $3.52/MWh

LSE Final ZEC Rate: $3.6621/MWh

Revised ZEC Agreement [PDF]

Final Zero Emissions Credit (ZEC) Implementation Plan [PDF]

In accordance with the Final Zero Emissions Credit Implementation Plan [PDF], filed on October 21, 2019, NYSERDA and Staff will modify how each LSE’s initial ZEC obligation is calculated, beginning April 1, 2020, and how LSEs remit ZEC obligation payments. Under the new method, a uniform wholesale per MWh charge will be applied to each LSE’s actual wholesale load to calculate their monthly ZEC obligation payments.

Each year, NYSERDA will determine, in collaboration with Staff, the dollar per MWh charge (LSE ZEC Rate) owed by each LSE for the next compliance year of the ZEC program. The dollar per MWh charge to be paid by each LSE for the compliance year will be calculated according to the following formula:

LSE ZEC Rate = NYSERDA’s maximum total cost to procure ZECs / Forecasted statewide electric load

An LSE’s monthly ZEC payment obligation will be calculated using the LSE ZEC Rate, the number of MWh the LSE served, using the New York Independent System Operator’s (NYISO) Version 1 load data and a Load Modifier Rate according to the following formula:

LSE ZEC monthly payment obligation = (LSE ZEC Rate) x (LSE’s Version 1 MWh) x (Load Modifier Rate)


The new “pay-as-you-go” payment methodology relies on an LSE’s monthly wholesale load requirements for their retail customers. NYSERDA will utilize Version 1 of the total LSE load data, as settled by the NYISO each month, as a basis for each LSE’s monthly payment to NYSERDA.

NYSERDA typically receives load data from the NYISO on or around the 15th day of the following month. NYSERDA will then determine the LSE’s ZEC monthly payment obligation to NYSERDA using the formula specified above and issue an invoice. As directed by the Public Service Commission in the Order Approving Zero Emissions Credit Implementation Plan with Modifications, LSEs will submit their payment to NYSERDA within 15 days from the issuance of the invoice.


The updated pay-as-you-go process should reduce the magnitude of the reconciliations but will not eliminate the need for a reconciliation process. The reconciliation process will continue to be based on the LSE’s load using NYISO Version 2 data, the total load served by the LSEs and the number of ZECs actually purchased by NYSERDA.

In summary, NYSERDA will utilize the following process to reconcile the funds necessary to purchase the ZECs and account for collections from the LSEs.

  1. NYSERDA will determine the actual dollar per MWh charge based on the total dollars expended by NYSERDA to purchase ZECs.
  2. NYSERDA will sum the total load served by the LSEs using the NYISO Version 2 load data including load modifiers.
  3. Steps 1 and 2 will be used to determine the final ZEC Rate.
  4. This final ZEC Rate will be applied to the total load associated with each LSE, as recorded in NYGATS, and provide the LSEs their ZEC obligation for the compliance year.
  5. NYSERDA will reconcile the payments received from each of the LSEs against the ZEC obligation.

Trainings and Webinars

NYSERDA will host at least one webinar to inform LSEs on the new ZEC process and demonstrate the associated new NYGATS capabilities. Please check back for webinar details.