Washington State

House of Representatives

Office of Program Research



Environment Committee

HB 1643

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

Brief Description: Regarding energy conservation under the energy independence act.

Sponsors: Representatives Fey, Short, Upthegrove, Nealey, Pollet, Liias, Ormsby, Ryu and Moscoso.

Brief Summary of Bill

  • Reduces the amount of a penalty a qualifying utility must pay for noncompliance with energy conservation requirements by applying excess conservation from the previous biennium.

Hearing Date: 2/12/13

Staff: Scott Richards (786-7156).


Energy Independence Act.

Approved by voters in 2006, the Energy Independence Act, also known as Initiative 937 (I-937), requires electric utilities with 25,000 or more customers to meet targets for energy conservation and for using eligible renewable resources. Utilities that must comply with I-937 are called qualifying utilities.

Energy Conservation Assessments and Targets.

Each qualifying electric utility must pursue all available conservation that is cost-effective, reliable, and feasible. By January 1, 2010, each qualifying utility must assess the conservation it can achieve through 2019, and update the assessments every two years for the next ten-year period. Beginning January 2010, each qualifying utility must meet biennial conservation targets that are consistent with its conservation assessments.

Summary of Bill:

If a qualifying utility does not meet its biennial energy conservation acquisition target and is subject to administrative penalties, the Utilities and Transportation Commission, for a qualifying utility that is an investor-owned utility, or the Attorney General, for a qualifying utility that is not an investor-owned utility, must reduce the penalty by the adjusted amount of the penalty for each megawatt-hour in excess of its conservation target from the previous completed biennium.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Available.

Effective Date: The bill takes effect 90 days after adjournment of the session in which the bill is passed.