San Jose Achieves Cleanest Power Mix of Ten Largest US Cities

San Jose Achieves Cleanest Power Mix of Ten Largest US Cities

With the highest level of sustainably-sourced energy out of any major city, the City is on track for its carbon-neutral goal by 2030

Post Date:04/21/2022 1:00 PM


April 21, 2022

Media Contact:

Rachel Davis, Chief Communications Officer, Office of Mayor Sam Liccardo


SAN JOSÉ, CA – Today, San José Mayor Sam Liccardo and San José Clean Energy (SJCE) announced a major accomplishment in San José’s efforts to combat the effects of climate change. SJCE, the community choice energy provider for 350,000 homes and businesses in San José, has achieved a 95% carbon-free electricity mix through their use of solar, wind, and hydroelectric power, and is the cleanest electricity mix out of the ten largest cities in the country. Renewable sources like solar and wind comprise 60% of SJCE’s power mix, up from 45% offered by SJCE in 2019.

“San José continues to lead the nation through innovative solutions in our fight against climate change,” said San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo. “SJCE’s clean power mix is just one of the bold actions we are taking to create a sustainable future for generations to come.”

Increasing the amount of renewable and carbon-free energy powering San José is a key component of Climate Smart San José, the city’s climate action plan. In November 2021, Council pledged to reach net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. SJCE will play a critical role in reaching this ambitious goal.

“San José Clean Energy is proud to play this foundational role on San José’s path to a carbon-neutral, clean energy future,”said Lori Mitchell, Director of the Community Energy Department, which operates SJCE. “Our clean electricity is electrifying transportation, homes, and businesses and will improve the health of our community and planet.”

To date, SJCE has invested more than $1 billion to add new solar, wind, and battery storage to the grid at cost-effective prices for customers. In February 2022, Mayor Liccardo, along with SJCE, announced the completion of a new 62 megawatt (MW) solar generation and energy storage facility in Kern County that is delivering clean, pollution-free electricity daily from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. for San José homes and businesses for the next 12 years. This builds on SJCE’s investment in a 225 MW wind farm in New Mexico produced from 117 wind turbines that deliver enough clean electricity to power 186,000 San José homes.

As the community choice provider for San Joséans, SJCE sources energy at competitive rates while PG&E delivers the energy over its system of poles and wires. GreenSource, SJCE’s standard service option, is currently sourced at 60% from renewable energy. Community Choice Aggregation (CCAs) like SJCE are a driving force in California’s clean energy future: in total, 23 CCAs have contracted for nearly 10,000 MW of new solar, wind, biogas, geothermal, and energy storage, fueling renewable energy development, green jobs, and economic growth. CCAs are also driving markets for grid reliability solutions like long-duration storage. California Community Power, a group of ten CCAs (including SJCE) that have joined to procure large-scale clean energy and reliability resources, recently announced two investments in long-duration energy storage: 69 MW in Kern County and 50 MW in Escondido.

As of Spring 2022, private automobiles and transportation-related carbon emissions account for more than 50% of the city’s greenhouse gas emissions. In light of this, San José remains the city with the single highest number of electric vehicle chargers, at a rate three times the national average. Across San José, 97%, or 1,647 chargers, are public and 52, or 3%, are private-facing chargers. With 4% of all registered vehicles in the city being fully-electric or plug-in hybrids as of 2020, San José is the city with the third-highest adoption of electric vehicles in the nation with nearly 75,000 electric vehicles on the road, countywide.

The progress on closing the disproportionate impact of the transportation sector on San José’s emissions aligns with the city’s carbon-neutral goal. Additional climate efforts include the 2021 ban on gas-powered appliances and systems in new building construction and changes to the building code to encourage electrification, energy efficiency, and on-site electric vehicle charging. San José is the largest city in the United States to have set the ambitious goal of carbon neutrality by 2030 and is making strides toward reducing its citywide greenhouse gas emissions.


About the City of San José

With more than one million residents, San José comprises the 10th largest city in the United States, and one of its most diverse cities. Dan José’s  into a global innovation center in the heart of Silicon Valley has resulted in the world’s greatest concentration of technology talent and development.

About San José Clean Energy 

San José Clean Energy (SJCE) is the local, not-for-profit electricity generation provider for homes and businesses in the City of San José. SJCE is operated by the City’s Community Energy Department and governed by the City Council. SJCE provides 350,000 customer accounts with cleaner energy at competitive rates plus the additional benefits of customer choice, community programs, local control, transparency, and accountability. For more information, please visit Follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram @SJCleanEnergy.