The Northern California Solar Energy Association released the 9th edition of its Solar Energy Resource Guide (SERG). It’s an 80-page primer aimed at people new to solar, seasoned professionals, job seekers, and homeowners and renters who want help determining how solar works best for them. The SERG includes old topics (basics of PV, solar hot water, and passive solar, how to hire a solar contractor, and financing and payback for solar), and new content on community solar, solar cooking, Passive House, fire safety, back-of-the-module PV technologies, net zero energy buildings, and more. If you’d like one or more copies,

The US EPA has release a Clean Energy Financing Guide intended to help government entities understand and make decisions to support appropriate financing programs for their jurisdiction. The Guide’s objective is to help government entities facilitate financing support in the commercial and residential sectors, with a secondary focus on helping state and local governments finance improvements to their own buildings. Financing strategies that states and communities can apply to both energy efficiency and renewable energy are covered. The document is intended primarily for users with limited financial background.

Local Climate Action Planning is the first book designed to help planners, municipal staff and officials, citizens and others working at local levels to develop Climate Action Plans. A CAP clearly outlines a community’s plan for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, lowering energy consumption, and in the process creating a more livable, sustainable community.

The Institute for Local Government has developed a CEQA Greenhouse Gas Guide for elected officials, Evaluating Greenhouse Gas Emissions as Part of California’s Environmental Review Process: A Local Official’s Guide, that includes a brief discussion about climate action plans and the CEQA guidelines.

The US DOE’s Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy Program has released Model Specifications for LED Roadway Lighting, which will enable cities, utilities, and other local agencies to assemble effective bid documents for LED street lighting products.

The California Energy Commission’s Energy Aware Planning Guide is a comprehensive resource for local governments seeking to reduce energy use, improve energy efficiency, and increase usage of renewable energy across all sectors. Strategies explored include transportation and land use changes, optimizing water use, building improvements, and other strategies. Each strategy section contains general plan language ideas, implementation ideas, case studies and resources. The Guide can be downloaded for free from the CEC’s web site.

The California Energy Commission’s Energy Aware Facility Siting and Permitting Guide assists local governments with developing general plan energy and transmission elements and provides guidance on utility-scale electricity generation and transmission planning and permitting. The Guide can be downloaded for free from the CEC’s web site.

In 2008, the California Public Utilities Commission adopted the California Long-term Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan, presenting a single roadmap to achieve maximum energy savings across all major groups and sectors in California. This comprehensive Plan for 2009 to 2020 is the state’s first integrated framework of goals and strategies for saving energy, covering government, utility, and private sector actions, and holds energy efficiency to its role as the highest priority resource in meeting California’s energy needs.

EPA’s State and Local Climate and Energy Program has released a final version of Energy Efficiency in Local Government Operations: A Guide to Developing and Implementing Greenhouse Gas Reduction Programs (PDF) (72 pp, 5.3 MB). This guide describes how local governments can lead by example and achieve multiple benefits by improving the energy efficiency of their new, existing, and renovated facilities and their day-to-day operations. It is designed to be used by facility managers, energy and environment staff, other local government agencies, and mayors and city councils. This document is part of the Local Government Climate and Energy Strategy Series, which is designed to help policy makers and program staff plan, implement, and evaluate cost-effective climate and energy projects that generate economic, environmental, social, and human health benefits.

The Center for Social Inclusion (CSI) has developed a white paper on Energy Democracy: Supporting Community Innovation. Energy democracy seeks to ensure that everyone can participate in clean energy programs. Much of the current energy policy in the US focuses on rewarding individuals for lower carbon lifestyles – conserving energy or switching to alternatives like rooftop PVs. Only a percentage of Americans can take advantage of these policies, including the fastest growing populations, which are communities of color.

The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) has release a new white paper titled The Role of Local Governments and Community Organizations as Energy Efficiency Implementation Partners.

The Alliance to Save Energy (ASE) released a new white paper on energy efficiency and climate adaptation called Energy Efficiency: A Tool for Climate Adaptation.

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