This page last reviewed April 11, 2019

Solar Voluntary Renewable Electricity Program

The Voluntary Renewable Electricity (VRE) Program allows purchasers of eligible voluntary renewable electricity to request retirement of allowances on their behalf under the Cap-and-Trade Program. The VRE Program supports purchases of renewable electricity and renewable energy credits (RECs) that are not mandated by the Renewables Portfolio Standard and provides a mechanism for the recognition of voluntary purchases of renewable electricity or RECs in the Cap-and-Trade Program. The Cap-and-Trade Regulation specifies a percentage of allowances to be set aside each year into a Voluntary Renewable Electricity Reserve Account for VRE purposes.

CARB retires allowances each year for eligible voluntary renewable electricity generated in the previous year. The regulation provides one half percent of the annual budget for the budget years in the first compliance period, and then a quarter of a percent for the budget years in the subsequent compliance periods, to be dedicated to a Voluntary Renewable Electricity Reserve Account, from which allowances may be retired. The total allowances that may be retired from the VRE Reserve Account for each vintage year are reflected in the table below.

Application Forms for Voluntary GHG Allowance Retirement:

The information requested in the VRE Application Form and VRE Generator Form (available at the links below) and all supporting documents should be received by CARB no later than 5:00 p.m. on July 1 of the year following the year the voluntary renewable electricity was generated. CARB requests that applicants submit a scanned copy of the signed application and all supporting documentation, as well as Excel spreadsheet versions of the VRE Generator Form and the WREGIS REC Retirement Report, via email to vreprogram@arb.ca.gov. If you wish to submit original signed copies of the VRE Application and attestations, mail them to the following address:

Voluntary Renewable Electricity Program Administrator
California Air Resources Board
CCPEB, 6th Floor
1001 “I” Street
Sacramento,CA 95814


Applicants should note that, pursuant to section 95841.1(b)(1)(E) of the Cap-and-Trade Regulation, VRE participants may not claim RECs or any claims to the emissions, or lack of emissions, for electricity for which they are seeking CARB allowance retirement under the VRE Program, in any other voluntary or mandatory program. CARB considers such use in another program to be a dual claim and prohibited. This prohibition includes a prohibition on claiming the same RECs for VRE allowance retirement and for the purposes of the Low Carbon Fuel Standard Low-Carbon Intensity Electricity pathway. VRE applications found to have dual claims on RECs, emissions or lack of emissions for electricity for which the participant is seeking CARB allowance retirement will be rejected by CARB, and VRE allowance retirements later discovered to be based on dual claims on RECs will be invalidated and designated as such on the VRE webpage. Dual claims on RECs may be subject to legal action pursuant to the Cap-and-Trade Regulation.

Voluntary Renewable Electricity
Program Allowance Totals


Vintage Year1
Allowances Available for Retirement Allowances Retired Allowances Remaining
2013 814,000 814,000 0
2014 798,500 238,526 559,974
2015 986,250 0 986,250
2016 956,000 0 956,000
2017 926,000 0 926,000
2018 895,750 0 895,750
2019 865,750 0 865,750
2020 835,500 0 835,500
1Click on the vintage year to view a table that shows the entities on whose behalf CARB retired VRE allowances.
That table also shows the generation (MWh) approved for VRE allowance retirement in each calendar year

For questions or comments, please email the voluntary renewable electricity program administrator at vreprogram@arb.ca.gov.

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