Nevada Irrigation District roundtable will highlight community-owned power

Nevada County residents will be able to explore the possibility of controlling their power supply during a roundtable on Community Choice Aggregation on Thursday.

The discussion, hosted by the Nevada Irrigation District, will highlight how Community Choice Aggregation programs are administered by local governments to purchase electricity as an alternative to investor-owned utility sources such as PG&E. Topics will include the basics (the what, why and how of Community Choice Aggregation), potential benefits, the formation process, a case study presentation with “lessons learned,” and a general Q&A.

According to NID General Manager Rem Scherzinger, the water district decided to take the lead on Community Choice Aggregation because it currently is exploring the concepts of “net zero energy” and “carbon-free water.”

Specifically, Scherzinger said, the district wants to make its North Auburn water treatment plant “electrical grid neutral,” where it is either generating its own electricity or uses power generated elsewhere by NID.

The carbon-free water concept is one being implemented by other districts, where the entire water system is being run off sustainable carbon-free power.

“The district sees Community Choice Aggregation as a great opportunity to move toward a carbon-free supply” of power, Scherzinger said. ‘Our problem is, we’re buying power from PG&E, so there’s no control over where that power comes from. This would give us an opportunity to work with PG&E. to design a rate package that has carbon-free power as one of the fee structures.”

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