Statement on Western Community Energy

 

 

CalCCA is aware that Western Community Energy has filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection. We are continuing to closely monitor this evolving situation. WCE’s announcement and contact info are posted here. Additional information:

  • There are 24 operational community choice aggregation (CCA) programs in California with more than 200 cities and counties participating.
  • No other CCA in California has filed for bankruptcy protection.
  • CalCCA is not aware of other CCA programs that are in financial distress or facing bankruptcy.

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Statement on PCIA Decision by the CPUC

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 5.20.21
Contact: Leora Broydo Vestel
(415) 999-4757 | leora@cal-cca.org

CalCCA Statement on PCIA Decision by the CPUC

Today marks 454 days since the PCIA Working Group 3 (WG3) proposal was submitted to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). The proposal resulted from nearly a year of dedicated work by co-chairs representing CCA, IOU, and ESP customers to achieve consensus.

Through the WG3 process, co-chairs CalCCA, Southern California Edison, and Commercial Energy recommended solutions that would allow IOUs to more actively manage legacy energy resources to reduce above-market costs, which amount to billions of dollars per year that accrue to ratepayers, and to provide non-IOU customers with access to the full range of benefits they pay for through the PCIA. These include benefits associated with renewable energy, greenhouse gas-free energy, and resource adequacy.

Today, the CPUC issued a final decision on WG3. We appreciate that the Commission adopted a key element of the proposal that requires the IOUs to open up access to renewable energy benefits to all customers who pay for those benefits. Unfortunately, the CPUC denied provisions of the proposal that would allow equitable access to resource adequacy benefits and punted consideration of a GHG-free benchmark to a future proceeding.

The CPUC’s decision to block fair and equal access to these resources runs counter to the Legislature’s clear mandate that all ratepayers – IOU and CCA alike – should receive benefits from PCIA resources to offset their cost responsibility. By failing to comply with this directive, the CPUC is continuing a systematic practice of prioritizing bundled IOU customers over CCA customers when it comes to the treatment of legacy costs.

CalCCA will analyze the impact of this decision on departing load customers over the next few weeks. In the meantime, Senate Bill 612, legislation that advances ratepayer equity and cost savings, was voted out of the Senate Appropriations Committee today and is heading to the Senate floor. CalCCA will continue to advocate for timely PCIA solutions that reduce costs and increase stability for all ratepayers.

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About CalCCA: Launched in 2016, the California Community Choice Association (CalCCA) represents California’s community choice electricity providers before the state Legislature and at regulatory agencies, advocating for a level playing field and opposing policies that unfairly discriminate against CCAs and their customers. There are currently 24 operational CCA programs in California serving more than 11 million customers.

For more information about CalCCA and community choice visit, www.cal-cca.org.

Number of CCA Communities in California Hits 200 Mark

 

CalCCA News Alert for April 1, 2021

Number of CCA Communities in California Hits 200 Mark

The Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) movement in California achieved a significant milestone today as the total number of cities and counties with CCA service exceeded 200. The number of CCA jurisdictions reached 201 on April 1 as East Bay Community Energy initiated service to Newark, Pleasanton, and Tracy, and MCE initiated service to Pleasant Hill and Vallejo.

This latest bump in the number of communities served by CCAs is part of a wave of new service rollouts in 2021 that includes expansions by Central Coast Community Energy in January (Cities of Arroyo Grande, Del Rey Oaks, Grover Beach, Guadalupe, Paso Robles, Pismo Beach, Santa Maria, Solvang, and Unincorporated Santa Barbara County) and Valley Clean Energy (City of Winters), also in January.

California’s newest CCA, San Diego Community Power, launched service in March (Cities of Chula Vista, Encinitas, Imperial Beach, La Mesa, and San Diego). Next up: Clean Energy Alliance is planning to launch in May (Cities of Carlsbad, Del Mar, and Solana Beach), and Santa Barbara Clean Energy in October (City of Santa Barbara).


CCA has come a long way since MCE launched the first operational CCA program in Marin County in 2010. Over the last decade, local governments in cities and counties throughout the state have chosen to participate in CCA to meet climate action goals, provide residents and businesses with more energy options, ensure local transparency and accountability, and drive economic development and green jobs.

As the number of community choice energy providers has expanded across California over the last decade, the demographics of the communities they serve have diversified. “California CCAs represent a variety of communities with different sizes, median incomes, and political affiliation,” notes the UCLA Luskin Center for Innovation.

See below for additional information on CCA growth and impact.


CCA in California

There are now 24 community choice energy providers successfully serving more than 11 million customers in 201 towns, cities, and counties throughout California. Many other communities are planning to launch CCA programs or are considering doing so.


CCA Load Growth

Community choice energy programs now serve about 28 percent of the load in the territories of the state’s three main investor-owned utilities (Pacific Gas & Electric, San Diego Gas & Electric, and Southern California Edison). By 2022, it’s projected CCAs will serve about 38 percent of the IOUs’ load. You can find more CCA stats here.


CCAs: Putting Clean Energy on the Map

CCAs have signed long-term power purchase agreements (PPAs) for more than 6,000 Megawatts (MW) of new clean generation capacity, fueling clean energy development, green jobs, and economic growth throughout California. The map below shows the locations of new-build clean energy projects with CCA PPAs. More on CCA procurement here.

 


“In California, where the electric grid powers the world’s fifth-largest economy with 80% renewable energy at times, calls are growing louder for the state to accelerate its current zero-carbon target date of 2045. And California’s fastest-growing retail power suppliers, local government-run community choice aggregators, or CCAs, are well ahead of the curve.” – S&P Global Market Intelligence


CCA Programs

CCAs do much more than invest in clean energy. Because CCAs are not-for-profit public agencies, excess revenues are reinvested in communities and used to fund innovative and tailored programs that suit community preferences and interests. Community choice energy programs have allocated significant funds to COVID-19 relief efforts and grid resilience initiatives. Innovative CCA programs are the focus of CalCCA’s Community Energy Innovation webinar series. You can browse the broad range of CCA programs by clicking on the image below or visiting this page.


“CCAs can design and deploy innovative initiatives and community-centered programs that provide financial and environmental benefits and can respond to communities’ needs in times of crisis.” – UCLA Luskin Center for Innovation


California is Powered by Community Choice

To find out more about how Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) works and whether your community is Powered by Community Choice go to this page.


For more information contact:
Leora Broydo Vestel
Director of Communications
California Community Choice Association
leora@cal-cca.org

CalCCA Recognizes Dawn Weisz, MCE CEO, with 2020 CCA Champion Award

       

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 20, 2020

CalCCA Press Contact: Leora Broydo Vestel
(415) 999-4757 | leora@cal-cca.org

MCE Press Contact: Jenna Famular
(925) 378-6747 | communications@mceCleanEnergy.org

CalCCA Recognizes Dawn Weisz, MCE CEO, with 2020 CCA Champion Award

San Rafael and Concord, Calif. – The California Community Choice Association (CalCCA) and MCE announced today that MCE CEO, Dawn Weisz, has received the 2020 CCA Champion Award. The annual award recognizes a leader who has worked to ensure the long-term success and viability of Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) in California.

Dawn Weisz is this year’s CCA Champion

In selecting Weisz to receive the 2020 CCA Champion Award, CalCCA recognizes her enormous contributions as a CCA trailblazer, leader, and tireless supporter. With Weisz at the helm, MCE launched California’s first community choice energy program in 2010 and laid the groundwork for others to follow. There are now 23 operational CCA programs that serve more than 10 million customers in 180+ cities and counties throughout California, growth that sprung from the seeds that were planted by Weisz and MCE a decade ago.

The award also recognizes Weisz’s leadership role in the formation of CalCCA in 2016. CalCCA acts as a unified voice in the policy and legislative arenas, advancing policies that benefit local communities and the transition to a just energy future. CalCCA is honored to recognize Weisz’s dedication as one of the most influential leaders in the fight for clean energy advocacy.

“Sonoma Clean Power recognizes Dawn and MCE’s role in creating the playbook for CCAs,” said Sonoma Clean Power CEO and CalCCA Board President Geof Syphers. “It’s so much easier to be second than first. Under your leadership, MCE made CCAs possible and practical. We appreciate you cheering us on. ”

CalCCA Executive Director Beth Vaughan presented Weisz with the award at the association’s Nov. 12 Board of Directors meeting via video conferencing, noting that Weisz is widely recognized as the “godmother” of community choice.

Weisz’s award (pictured) is made from recycled glass.

“It is an honor to award Dawn with the 2020 CCA Champion Award in recognition of her tremendous contributions to the CCA movement in California,” Vaughan said. “Dawn is the very embodiment of a CCA champion.”

CalCCA board members praised Weisz for her leadership, positivity, and unwavering support for their partner agencies; her willingness to share her time and expertise with emerging CCAs; and her strong relationship with MCE’s Board of Directors and the benefit that relationship has brought to all community choice programs.

“I am honored to accept CalCCA’s 2020 CCA Champion Award,” said Weisz. “MCE started as a dream in the Marin County Civic Center and community and I am grateful to the dedicated advocates, staff, elected officials, and customers who have made CCAs the success they are today. Our goal was to shape the energy industry into something that benefits both people and the environment. The hard work of CCAs across the state has changed the face of power in California and I am proud to be a part of that change.”

This year, 2020, also marks the anniversary of MCE’s first 10 years of service. During this time MCE has reinvested over $180 million in its member communities through cost savings, development of local renewable energy projects, and tailored customer programs. MCE’s impact stretches across its 36-community service area as well as into the entire state of California. For more information on the success of MCE’s first decade of service, please view the 10-year Impact Report.

CalCCA’s Board of Directors selects the recipient of the CCA Champion Award. Past awardees include Assemblymember Al Muratsuchi, Senator Mike McGuire, and Senator Mark Leno.

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About CalCCA
Launched in 2016, the California Community Choice Association (CalCCA) represents California’s community choice electricity providers before the state Legislature and at regulatory agencies, advocating for a level playing field and opposing policies that unfairly discriminate against CCAs and their customers. There are currently 23 operational CCA programs in California serving more than 10 million customers. For more information about CalCCA, visit www.cal-cca.org.

About MCE
As California’s first Community Choice Aggregation Program, MCE is a groundbreaking, not-for-profit, public agency that has been setting the standard for energy innovation in our communities since 2010.  MCE offers cleaner power at stable rates, significantly reducing energy-related greenhouse emissions and enabling millions of dollars of reinvestment in local energy programs. MCE is a load-serving entity supporting a 1,200 MW peak load. MCE provides electricity service to more than 480,000 customer accounts and more than one million residents and businesses in 36 member communities across four Bay Area counties: Contra Costa, Marin Napa and Solano. For more information about MCE, visit mceCleanEnergy.org, or follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram.

California CCAs Amass 6,000 MW in Long-Term Contracts with New-Build Clean Energy Resources

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 11.12.2020
Contact: Leora Broydo Vestel
(415) 999-4757 | leora@cal-cca.org

California CCAs Amass 6,000 MW in Long-Term Contracts with New-Build Clean Energy Resources

Expanding CCA sector continues to fuel clean energy development, green jobs, and economic growth throughout the state

Concord, Calif. – The California Community Choice Association (CalCCA) announced today that Community Choice Aggregators (CCAs) in the state have to date signed long-term power purchase agreements (PPAs) for more than 6,000 megawatts (MW) with new-build clean energy resources.

The total includes almost 5,000 MW in executed renewable energy PPAs – an increase of 1,700 MW compared to a year ago – and more than 1,000 MW in battery energy storage contracts, a four-fold increase over last year. The increasing volumes reflect the important leadership position CCAs hold as the main drivers of new clean energy procurement in California.

“These new totals show that community choice energy providers are continuing to make great progress in securing the energy resources California needs to build a clean, affordable, and reliable electric system,” said CalCCA Executive Director Beth Vaughan. “At the same time, CCAs are driving economic recovery and job creation in the state when they are most needed.”

Each November for the last three years, CalCCA has provided a snapshot of the progress CCAs are making in securing new-build clean energy resources through long-term PPAs. This year’s update shows CCAs have added in a single year a record-setting amount of clean energy to their portfolios while bringing more diverse resources to the mix.

CCAs have signed in the last year renewable energy and energy storage PPAs totaling 2,600 MW, bringing the grand total to more than 6,000 MW in new-build solar, wind, biogas, energy storage, and, for the first time, geothermal energy. The geothermal power plant, slated for completion in 2021, will be the first new geothermal facility built in the California Independent System Operator balancing area in 30 years.

*hybridized storage is the amount of total energy storage that is paired with solar. **hybridized solar is the amount of total solar that is paired with energy storage

With record-breaking heat, rampant wildfires, and Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPS) threatening the stability of California’s power grid, energy storage is becoming an ever more important reliability resource. Aggregators are stepping up to ensure more storage is added to the grid with the signing of long-term battery energy storage contracts totaling 1,072 MW/3,847 megawatt-hours (MWh), quadruple the amount CCAs had at this time last year. About 72% of the total is co-located with solar generation facilities that will charge the batteries, allowing clean energy to be discharged at times of peak demand to boost reliability.

Seventeen CCAs have collectively signed 117 long-term PPAs with new solar, wind, biogas, geothermal, and energy storage facilities, up from 76 contracts in November 2019 – a 54% increase. The contract terms range from 10 to 25 years, or 17 years on average across all contracts. The clean energy resources are helping the CCAs meet their renewables portfolio standard (RPS) and long-term contracting requirements under SB 350, as well as local mandates set by CCA boards.

The 17 CCAs included in the PPA tally are Apple Valley Choice Energy, Central Coast Community Energy, Clean Power Alliance, CleanPowerSF, East Bay Community Energy, Lancaster Choice Energy, MCE, Peninsula Clean Energy, Pico Rivera Innovative Municipal Energy, Pioneer Community Energy, Rancho Mirage Energy Authority, Redwood Coast Energy Authority, San Jacinto Power, San Jose Clean Energy, Silicon Valley Clean Energy, Sonoma Clean Power, and Valley Clean Energy.

The clean energy projects are located in 21 California counties (up from 19 in 2019), from Humboldt County in the north to Riverside County in the south, as well as in the states of Arizona, New Mexico, and Nevada. Several projects are already operating, while others will become operational between 2020 and 2023. A map of project locations and a list of contracts can be found here.

Click to see a map of CCA clean energy projects

With several new CCA requests for offers (RFOs) currently underway and planned, the list of CCA long-term clean energy contracts is set to grow considerably in the coming year. Notably, a group of CCAs recently issued a joint RFO for 500 MW of long duration storage (LDS) with a minimum of eight hours of discharge duration. CCAs are procuring LDS to aid in meeting California’s 2030 greenhouse gas reduction targets.

With a decade of successful operation in California, aggregators are viewed as reliable and stable counterparties and are proving adept at securing the cost-effective energy resources the state needs to meet ambitious climate action goals. Four CCAs – Central Coast Community Energy, MCE, Peninsula Clean Energy, and Silicon Valley Clean Energy – have investment-grade credit ratings, and more CCAs are expected to follow suit.

As of 2020, CCAs serve over 50 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of load, representing 28% of the load in the service areas of California’s three main investor-owned utilities (Pacific Gas & Electric, San Diego Gas & Electric, and Southern California Edison). Based on planned CCA launches over the next two years, CalCCA forecasts CCAs will serve 36% of IOU load in 2022.

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About CalCCA: Launched in 2016, the California Community Choice Association (CalCCA) represents California’s community choice electricity providers before the state Legislature and at regulatory agencies, advocating for a level playing field and opposing policies that unfairly discriminate against CCAs and their customers. There are currently 23 operational CCA programs in California serving approximately 10 million customers.

For more information about CalCCA and community choice, visit www.cal-cca.org. To stay current on CCA in California, sign up for our mailing list here.

CalCCA Proposes Policy Changes to Improve Reliability of California’s Electric System

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 9.9.2020
Contact: Leora Broydo Vestel
(415) 999-4757 | leora@cal-cca.org

CalCCA Proposes Policy Changes to Improve Reliability of California’s Electric System
CCA Association Calls for Immediate Action in Regulatory, Legislative, and Federal Arenas

Concord, Calif. – With record-breaking heat and rampant wildfires threatening the stability of California’s power grid, the California Community Choice Association (CalCCA) is calling for immediate policy action to improve the reliability of the state’s electric system. In a letter sent today to Governor Gavin Newsom, CalCCA provides a series of recommendations that, if implemented, would help to avert future grid emergencies.

California power supplies were exceptionally tight during extreme heat storms that engulfed the state over the Labor Day weekend and in mid-August, and out-of-control wildfires have knocked out critical generation and transmission facilities. The emergency conditions, fueled by climate change, reveal an urgent need to reform the existing resource adequacy rules administered by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and California Independent System Operator (CAISO), and focus the state’s integrated resource planning (IRP) process more rigorously on supply reliability.

“As the root causes of the extreme emergency events are revealed, they may point directly to solutions necessary to mitigate the risk of repeating similar events in the future,” CalCCA Executive Director Beth Vaughan noted in the letter to the Governor. “Even without certainty regarding those causes, however, California can begin now to take steps to increase reliability through action in the regulatory, legislative, and federal arenas.”

CalCCA recommends the following near-term actions to improve the reliability of California’s electric system:

1. The CPUC should continue to ensure adequate supplies will be in place for summer 2021 requirements and beyond through the procurement track of the IRP process, and review its import restrictions in the context of the lessons learned during the extreme emergency events.

2. The Legislature should enact AB 3014 (Muratsuchi) to establish a Central Reliability Authority (CRA) responsible for planning and coordinating the state’s resource adequacy with the CAISO and, where necessary, procuring backstop supply.

3. California should support the expansion of the federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) to standalone energy storage resources and the removal of charging restrictions currently limiting the flexibility of battery energy storage to support the state’s ramping and peak needs.

CalCCA also recommends the Governor appoint an Independent Review Panel to consider the results of a root-cause investigation of the strained grid conditions that led the CAISO to initiate rotating outages on August 14 and 15, leaving thousands of Californians without power. CAISO, the CPUC, and California Energy Commission (the Joint Agencies) are investigating the August events and will issue a report with their findings. A review panel, CalCCA asserts, should consist of former agency experts, non-market participants representing each of the three categories of load serving entities (IOUs, CCAs, and ESPs), and other key stakeholders.

“While the Joint Agencies are no doubt motivated to prevent future shortages, an objective eye will ensure that natural biases do not affect the characterization of the root cause or proposed mitigation measures,” CalCCA notes.

CCAs share the state’s strong interest in ensuring reliable energy supply and grid operations and have actively engaged in regulatory efforts to boost reliability. Collectively, CCAs have executed almost 5,000 MW (5GW) of long-term power purchase agreements for new-build solar, wind, geothermal, and energy storage projects. Additionally, CalCCA members have taken the following actions to bolster reliability and prepare for future grid emergencies:

  • Expanding the use of critical peak pricing and TOU pricing that maximizes incentives for shifting demand away from periods of high stress on the grid.
  • Exceeding their share of the three-year 3,300 MW resource adequacy procurement ordered in October 2019 (to be installed between 2021 and 2023).
  • Taking steps to form a Joint Powers Authority to enable cooperative procurement of large-scale resources (e.g., long duration storage projects).
  • Installing hybrid generation and storage solutions to enhance the reliability of new solar resources and to reduce emissions from existing resources.
  • Facilitating the installation of clean energy backup power systems at local critical facilities used by the community for disaster preparedness.

CCAs are prepared to do more and are committed to working with the Joint Agencies and the investor-owned utilities (IOUs) to support reliable energy service and ensure sufficient in-state renewable integration supply.

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About CalCCA: Launched in 2016, the California Community Choice Association (CalCCA) represents California’s community choice electricity providers before the state Legislature and at regulatory agencies, advocating for a level playing field and opposing policies that unfairly discriminate against CCAs and their customers. There are currently 21 operational CCA programs in California serving approximately 10 million customers.

For more information about CalCCA and community choice, visit www.cal-cca.org. To stay current on CCA in California, sign up for our mailing list here.