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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri utility regulators have signed off an agreement involving Ameren Missouri over solar rebates.
Ameren Missouri asked the Public Service Commission last month for permission to suspend payment of the rebates.
The agreement approved Wednesday calls for the utility to continue the rebates up to a maximum of nearly $92 million. Ameren had paid nearly $22 million from August 2012 through October of this year.
Other parties to the agreement included the Missouri Solar Energy Industries Association and the state office that represents utility customers before the PSC.
A 2008-voter approved law requires investor-owned utilities to derive a certain percentage of their electric generation from renewable resources. It caps rate increases derived from that measure at 1 percent.
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - An environmental group is heading to court in another attempt to overturn the way Missouri officials have implemented a 2008 ballot initiative about renewable energy.
The initiative requires investor-owned utilities to tap renewable energy sources for at least 5 percent of their electricity by 2014, with that amount gradually rising to 15 percent by 2021.
In 2011, the Legislature blocked part of an administrative rule that would have required the electricity from renewable energy sources to be produced or sold in Missouri. The result is that utilities have been able to purchase credits for renewable energy produced by others.
A lawsuit filed this past week on behalf of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment challenges the legal basis for the Legislature's action.
A 2008 law approved by voters requires investor-owned utilities to use renewable energy sources for gradually increasing amounts of their electricity generation. That law restricted how hydroelectric power could count toward the requirement.
The House bill (HB44) would allow all hydroelectric power produced in Missouri or owned by a Missouri power company to count starting in 2018. Beginning in 2021, hydroelectric power generated elsewhere could count.
The bill cleared the House Thursday on a vote of 95-46 and now goes to the Senate.
Sponsors of the 2008 ballot measure criticized the bill, saying it would reverse possible economic development benefits from the law.