CESA Member California
Renewable Energy Program
Since 1998, the California Energy Commission's (Energy Commission) Renewable Energy Program has supported policies and programs that provide Californians with cleaner sources of energy for their homes, businesses, and schools. The Renewable Energy Program has encouraged investments in renewable energy by providing various rebates and renewable electricity production incentives for new and existing renewable facilities and emerging technologies. Meeting California's energy needs while reducing greenhouse gas emissions with renewable resources are the centerpieces of the program's efforts and are key to achieving the state's ambitious Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS), California Solar Initiative, and greenhouse gas reduction goals.
Renewables Portfolio Standard
California's RPS requires retail energy sellers to increase renewable energy as a percentage of their retail sales to 20 percent by 2010. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's signing of two Executive Orders set into motion higher RPS goals challenging California to get one-third of its electricity from renewables by 2020. The Energy Commission and the California Public Utilities Commission jointly implement the state's RPS, and the Energy Commission is tasked with certifying renewable facilities as eligible for the RPS and designing and implementing an accounting system to track and verify RPS compliance.
Western Renewable Energy Generation Information System (WREGIS)
The Energy Commission, together with APX, Inc., and the Western Electricity Coordinating Council, implemented and put into operation the WREGIS, a regional renewable energy certificate tracking and registry system. Launched in 2007, WREGIS issues and tracks WREGIS Certificates to support verification of compliance with California's RPS and with regulatory and voluntary renewable energy programs in the Western Interconnect.
Existing Renewable Facilities Program
The Existing Renewable Facilities Program offers production incentives to biomass, solar thermal electric, and wind facilities. Incentive payments are tied to market prices, with no payments made if the market price is above a predetermined target price.
Emerging Renewables Program
The Emerging Renewables Program provides rebates and production incentives to end-use consumers who purchase and install eligible renewable energy systems for on-site generation. Through 2006, eligible technologies were solar photovoltaic, small wind, fuel cells using renewable fuels, and solar thermal electric. Effective in 2007, only small wind systems and fuel cells (using a renewable fuel) are eligible. The Energy Commission's New Solar Homes Partnership (NSHP) and the California Public Utilities Commission's California Solar Initiative have replaced the solar component of the Emerging Renewables Program.
New Solar Homes Partnership
The Energy Commission's NSHP intends to create a sustainable market for solar homes and to gain builder commitment to install solar energy systems. The program offers incentives to encourage solar installations, with high levels of energy efficiency, in the residential new construction market. The goal of the NSHP is to install 400 MW of capacity by 2016.
Senate Bill 1
Senate Bill 1 (Murray, Chapter 132, Statutes of 2006), an extensive and multi-faceted legislation, enacts Governor Schwarzenegger's Million Solar Roofs Initiative and is built upon the California Public Utilities Commission's California Solar Initiative, the Energy Commission's NSHP, and the publicly owned utilities' existing solar energy incentive programs. With an emphasis on energy efficiency and high performance installations, this $3.35 billion comprehensive statewide solar effort aims to install 3,000 MW of capacity by 2016.
The Consumer Education Program funds grants and contracts to increase public awareness of renewable energy and its benefits and helps develop a consumer market for renewable energy and small-scale emerging renewable energy technologies.
- CEC Highlights California Solar Initiative and New Solar Homes Partnership at Congressional Briefing
- California’s Solar Equipment List Saves Time and Money
- California Energy Commission Wins 2016 State Leadership in Clean Energy Award for New Solar Homes Partnership
- Case Study: Promoting Greener, Better Housing in California
- CEC Wins Two 2012 State Leadership in Clean Energy Awards
- Two California Energy Commission Programs Win 2010 CESA "SLICE" Awards
- California Energy Commission Wins 2009 State Leadership in Clean Energy Award for WREGIS