Earth Month Series: Peninsula Clean Energy
To wrap up our Earth Month blog series, we focus on another way the City — with your help — can save the earth’s environment one program at a time!
This week we are focusing on the Peninsula Clean Energy Program (PCE), a community choice energy (CCE) program allowing local governments to pool the electricity demands of their communities, creating purchasing power with higher renewable content, and reinvesting in local infrastructure. This month, PCE became California’s largest community choice energy program with the enrollment of almost 300,000 accounts receiving electric generation service across 20 participating cities in San Mateo County.
Cheaper, Cleaner Energy Despite Recent PGE Rate Increases
The main advantages of the program are cost-savings and cleaner energy. Peninsula Clean Energy customers are automatically enrolled in ECOplus, a 50 percent renewable energy supply that is cleaner and greener than PG&E, and priced at 5 percent below PG&E’s generation service rate. Customers can also opt-up to ECO100, comprised of 100 percent renewable energy sources and priced at a slight premium to PG&E service.
Despite recent PG&E rate increases for natural gas and electricity transmission, PCE is not a factor in rising bills. In fact, PCE helps customers lower their bills. Although PG&E increased the exit fees that community choice energy customers pay by 26 percent, PCE lowered its rates to account for these fees, maintaining a 5 percent total savings on electricity costs for its customers.
The average household receiving ECOplus will avoid emissions equivalent to the carbon sequestered by 10 tree seedlings grown for 10 years. PCE recently completed the largest solar contract ever signed by a community choice energy provider, purchasing the entire output of a to-be-built 200 megawatt solar farm in Merced County for 20 years.
How It Works
PCE sources greener power for homes and businesses, while the local utility, PG&E, continues to deliver power over their lines and wires, handle the billing, maintain the power lines, and respond to new service requests and emergencies.
To learn more about this innovative program go here.