State utilities get average marks on renewable energy

Renew Wisconsin, a renewable energy advocacy organization, has given Wisconsin utilities average marks on its 2011 Renewable Energy Performance Report Card.

The report card, released Wednesday, gave the highest overall marks (B/C) to Madison Gas & Electric and Xcel Energy, while Alliant Energy (Wisconsin Power & Light), We Energies, and WPSC earned Cs.

Utilities were graded in six categories, with the highest scores gained in progress toward meeting the state’s renewable portfolio standard. The state has set a goal for utilities to produce 10% of their energy generation from renewables by 2015, and most utilities already have met their individual goals.

However, there is little support for establishing a new and higher mandate beyond that, and that brought down the overall scores for each utility.

In addition to progress toward meeting the renewable energy standard, utilities were judged on their green programs, buy-back purchases, net metering, their positions on the REC extension, and extra programs.