Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 45.2. Mines, Minerals, and Energy
Chapter 17. Other Sources of Energy Generally; Energy Policy
10/22/2021

Article 1. General Provisions.

§ 45.2-1700. (Effective October 1, 2021) Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires a different meaning:

"Consortium" means the Virginia Coastal Energy Research Consortium established pursuant to Article 5 (§ 45.2-1714 et seq.).

"Division" means the Division of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency of the Department of Energy.

"Plan" means the Virginia Energy Plan prepared pursuant to Article 4 (§ 45.2-1700 et seq.).

2006, c. 939, § 67-200; 2020, cc. 657, 658, 960; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, cc. 387, 532.

§ 45.2-1701. (Effective October 1, 2021) Division of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency established; powers and duties.

A. The Division of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency is established in the Department. The Director has the immediate authority to coordinate the development and implementation of energy policy in the Commonwealth.

B. The Division shall coordinate the energy-related activities of the various state agencies and advise the Governor on energy issues that arise at the local, state, and national levels. All state agencies and institutions shall cooperate fully with the Division to assist in the proper execution of the duties assigned by this section.

C. In addition, the Division is authorized to make and enter into all contracts and agreements necessary or incidental to the performance of its duties or the execution of its powers, including the implementation of energy information and conservation plans and programs.

D. The Division shall:

1. Consult with state agencies and institutions concerning energy-related activities or policies as needed for the proper execution of the duties assigned to the Division by this section;

2. Serve as the Commonwealth's liaison with appropriate agencies of the federal government concerning the activities of the federal government related to energy production, consumption, and transportation and energy resource management in general;

3. Provide services to encourage efforts by and among businesses in the Commonwealth, industries, utilities, academic institutions, state and local governments, and private institutions to develop energy resources and energy conservation programs;

4. In consultation with the State Corporation Commission, the Department of Environmental Quality, and the Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research, prepare the Virginia Energy Plan pursuant to § 45.2-1710; and

5. Observe the energy-related activities of state agencies and advise such agencies in order to encourage conformity with established energy policy.

1984, c. 590, § 45.1-390; 2006, c. 939; 2016, c. 518; 2021, Sp. Sess. I, cc. 387, 532.

§ 45.2-1701.1. (Effective October 1, 2021) Public disclosure of certain electric generating facility closures.

A. The provisions of this section shall apply to any electric generating facility that:

1. Has a nameplate generating capacity of 80 megawatts or more;

2. Is located in the Commonwealth;

3. Emits carbon dioxide as a byproduct of combusting fuel, whether or not certificated by the State Corporation Commission pursuant to subsection D of § 56-580; and

4. Is subject to, and not exempt from, regulations adopted pursuant to subsection E of § 10.1-1308 or § 10.1-1330.

B. Within 30 days of an owner of an electric generating facility making public the decision to close such facility, or within 30 days of the owner of an electric generating facility making a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission regarding a material impact to the cost, operations, or financial condition of the owner, which material impact is a direct precursor to the closure of the electric generating facility, the owner shall send a written notice of the impending closure to:

1. The governing body of the locality where the facility is located;

2. The governing body of any locality adjoining the locality where the facility is located;

3. Any town council located within a county described in subdivision 1;

4. Any planning district commission of any locality described in subdivision 1 or 2;

5. The State Corporation Commission Division of Public Utility Regulation;

6. The Department and the Division;

7. The Department of Housing and Community Development;

8. PJM Interconnection, LLC;

9. The Virginia Employment Commission;

10. The Department of Environmental Quality; and

11. The Virginia Council on Environmental Justice.

C. The notice required by subsection B shall include, at a minimum, (i) the anticipated closure date of the facility; (ii) references to any website maintained by the owner containing closure information; (iii) a list of permits obtained from a local government, the State Air Pollution Control Board, the State Water Control Board, or the Department of Environmental Quality, including the permit number and date of issuance; (iv) anticipated future use of the facility site, if known; (v) workforce transition assistance information; and (vi) decommissioning information. If the owner of the facility is a registrant with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, any filings mentioning the impending closure shall also be included with the notice.

D. In the six months following receipt of the notice required by subsection B, the governing body of the locality where the facility is located shall conduct at least three public hearings, which may be part of a regular meeting agenda, where at least one representative of the owner of the facility being closed shall be present, make a presentation regarding the impending closure, and take questions from the governing body and the public.

E. In the six months following receipt of the notice required by subsection B, the planning district commission of the locality where the facility is located shall conduct at least one public hearing, which may be part of a regular meeting agenda, where at least one representative of the owner of the facility being closed shall be present, make a presentation regarding the impending closure, and take questions from the planning district commission and the public.

F. The Division shall maintain a public website listing the facilities subject to this section and their anticipated closure dates, if such dates are reasonably known by virtue of the laws of the Commonwealth or a public record or filing with an agency of the Commonwealth, including the State Corporation Commission, and a link shall be provided to the facilities' environmental protection or remediation obligations included in permits obtained from the Department, State Air Pollution Control Board, State Water Control Board, Department of Environmental Quality, or local governing body. At least every 12 months, the State Corporation Commission shall transmit to the Division any information that it reasonably believes would necessitate updates to the anticipated closure dates or other information contained on the Division's website.

G. As providing advance notice to affected communities of an impending closure of a facility under this section is a matter of vital importance for public policy, this section shall be liberally construed. The obligations imposed on agencies of the Commonwealth under this section are to be construed in favor of public disclosure of the information required by subsection F.

H. Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection A, the provisions of this section shall not apply to any electric generating facility that has a nameplate generating capacity of 90 megawatts or less and that filed a deactivation notice with PJM Interconnection, LLC, prior to September 1, 2019.

2021, Sp. Sess. I, cc. 41, 42.