A CREZ (Competitive Renewable Energy Zones) is an area where wind generation facilities will be installed and from which transmission facilities will be built to various other areas of the state to deliver renewable power to end-user consumers in the most cost-effective manner. The CREZ project is the Public Utility Commission (PUC) of Texas’ response to a public mandate to increase renewable energy in Texas to serve the electric needs in the state.
The Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill (SB) 7 in 1999, which restructured the state’s electric industry and allowed LCRA to offer transmission services to other utilities throughout Texas. As a result of SB 7, the Texas Legislature established a renewable portfolio standard for electric power generation, with the intent to install more than 2,000 megawatts (MW) of generation capacity from renewable energy technologies by Jan. 1, 2009. Through Senate Bill 20 (SB 20), in 2005 the Texas Legislature raised the amount of renewable power generation to nearly 6,000 MW to be installed by Jan. 1, 2015. SB 20 further requires the PUC to set a target of 10,000 MW of renewable generation capacity to be installed by Jan. 1, 2025. Ultimately, the CREZ effort would allow Texas to build up to 18,456 MW.
LCRA Transmission Services Corporation (LCRA TSC) is one of several transmission service providers that have been formally ordered by the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC) to construct the new transmission lines that will be required to connect the CREZs to the load centers throughout the state. The PUC made a decision in January 2009 (Final Order issued in March 2009) as to which entities will build which transmission facilities.
The Public Utility Commission has chosen a route for all CREZ projects assigned to LCRA TSC. For information about these projects visit LCRA TSC Key Projects.
The Public Utility Commission of Texas provides updates on all CREZ projects through its CREZ Transmission Program Transmission Center.