Resource Library

At CCEC, we know communities are at different stages of working on various local climate and energy priorities. Whether you’re building EV charging infrastructure, helping property owners afford energy upgrades, or developing electrification plans and codes, you need a way to find all the best information when you’re ready to use it to inform your work. This resource library is designed to give you multiple ways to access the broad array of resources CCEC continuously compiles immediately. Here are a few examples of how you might use the search box or the filters to query our content:
  • You’ve been directed to initiate a new energy or climate project and hope to advance your knowledge and accelerate the process by accessing relevant best practices, case studies, technical assistance, guides, learning events, reports, and tools;
  • Your organization wants to expand its initiatives but lacks sufficient resources, and you need to identify possible funding sources;
  • You want to get an idea of the kinds of initiatives other communities are doing, especially in your region or for a particular sector;
  • and many more!
Don’t see an important resource or have one to share? Let us know by contacting eecoordinator@civicwell.org.
Best Practices

Best Practices for Virtual Engagement

Strategies for local agencies to gain community feedback during COVID-19. High and low tech options.

Name: Angel Hernandez
Title: Associate Planner
Organization: City of El Centro
Organization Type: City or County
Email: angel_hernandez@cityofelcentro.org
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Outreach and Engagement
Best Practices

Better Buildings Initiative: Combined Heat and Power (CHP) Project Profiles Database

In this database, more than 200 CHP Project Profiles compiled by DOE’s CHP Technical Assistance Partnerships (TAPs) can be searched by a variety of characteristics.

Organization: U.S. Department of Energy
Organization Type: Federal Government/Agency
Region: Out of State
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Climate Planning, Codes and Standards, Data Requests and Analysis, Energy Resilience
Best Practices

Better Buildings Initiative: How Distributed Energy Resources Can Improve Resilience in Public Buildings, Three Case Studies and a Step-by-Step Guide

This document introduces readers to the benefits of integrating energy efficiency with other distributed energy resources to achieve resilience benefits. It describes two DOE tools that each provides high-level assessments of the size and potential cost of onsite energy systems that can power critical facilities, and presents case studies with completed analysis on potential energy investments at existing facilities managed by three partners in DOE’s Better Buildings Challenge.

Organization: U.S. Department of Energy
Organization Type: Federal Government/Agency
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Climate Planning, Codes and Standards, Data Requests and Analysis, Distributed Energy Resources, Energy Resilience, Energy Saving Solutions, Public Agencies
Best Practices, Learning Event

Breaking Ground on Equitable Climate Action: An Interview with the City of Oakland

In this June 2021 recording, Angie Hacker, the CCEC Statewide Best Practices Coordinator, interviews Shayna Hirshfield-Gold, Climate Coordinator with the City of Oakland, which is doing groundbreaking work to advance equity as part of its climate action efforts. As many in the State move forward from just counting carbon and kilowatts, we invite you to listen to a timely conversation on how to thoughtfully expand local climate work to effectively engage environmental justice voices and ideas and consider impacts and opportunities for historically underserved or marginalized communities. Shayna shares personal experiences and advice on pitfalls, best practices, and successes. Thanks to Oakland and Shayna for providing a leading example that other local governments can certainly learn from. https://www.youtube.com/embed/e7zpgFZ65cI?feature=oembed

Name: Shayna Hirshfield-Gold
Title: Climate Coordinator
Organization: City of Oakland
Organization Type: City or County
Region: San Francisco Bay Area
Date: June 2021
Topic Areas: Climate Change, Climate Planning, Sustainability
Sectors Targeted: Disadvantaged Communities
Additional notes of interest: Interview
Best Practices

Budgeting for the High Road Just Transition

The Governor’s OPR will soon release the HIgh Road Just Transition Roadmap, which aims to incorporate economic diversification, industry planning, safety net updates, workforce development and regional collaboratives in the process of transitioning justly into a sustainable California with principles rooted in equity, inclusivity and good quality jobs.
Funding for the transition will come from CERF and divided into:
– High road transition collaboratives ($50 mill for regional grants)
– High road transition implementation pilots($50 mil in Diversification grants)
– High oad transition Implementation Grants ($500 mil on economic development – job creation)
Local governments wishing to be involved in the process are encouraged to engage by getting involved with collaboratives and by engaging in sustainability activities and economic development plans within their jurisdictions. They are also encouraged to join the OPR Just Transition listserv to receive updates from this program.

Name: Sarah L. White
Title: Senior Advisor: Jobs and the Economy
Organization: Governor's Office of Planning and Research
Organization Type: State Government/Agency
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Annual Budget Appropriations, Climate Change, Climate Planning, Financing/Funding, Grants Programs, Internal Funding Best Practices, Sustainability
Sectors Targeted: Disadvantaged Communities
Best Practices

Building Electrification 101

An overview of building electrification technologies and common barriers and opportunities for scaling up implementation.

Name: Jenna Tatum
Title: Director
Organization: BEI
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Email: jenna@beicities.org
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Businesses, Distributed Energy Resources, Energy Resilience, Energy Saving Solutions, Public Agencies, Residential
Best Practices

Building Owner Energy Efficiency Resources

The Building Energy Benchmarking program requires owners of large buildings to report energy use to the California Energy Commission (CEC). These resources will help building owners and managers achieve higher building energy efficiency.

Organization: California Energy Commission
Organization Type: State Government/Agency
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Businesses, Climate Planning, Energy Resilience, Energy Saving Solutions, Residential
Sectors Targeted: Residential
Best Practices

Building Performance Training

3C-REN’s Building Performance Training is tailored for current and prospective building professionals—with expert instruction, technical trainings, soft skills development and certifications on the latest energy efficiency methods and measures. Building Performance Training is available to designers, contractors, building and safety staff ,realtors and more. Learning units and certifications on various topics such as building science, energy code, decarbonizing technologies, passive house and more are offered through this program. To date, Building Performance Training has trained over 1,200 individuals and is currently exploring how to extend the program’s offerings to younger people and people going through career transitions.

Name: Ian Logan
Title: Sustainability Program Specialist
Organization: 3C-REN
Organization Type: Other Local Government
Email: info@3C-REN.org
Region: Central Coast
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Outreach and Engagement
Best Practices

California City 0% On-Bill Financing

California City used 0% on-bill financing, from Southern California Edison, to pay for a well pump retrofit. The improvement resulted in new infrastructure and $16,000 in annual energy savings, paying for itself in just three and a half years.

Organization: California City
Organization Type: City or County
Region: Sierra Nevada, San Joaquin Valley
Topic Areas: External Funding Best Practices, Financing/Funding, On-Bill Financing
Best Practices

California Hub for Energy Efficiency FInancing Affordable Multifamily EE financing Program

Equipment finance agreements from $10k-$250k; energy service agreements from $250,000 to $10 million for multifamily properties where at least 50% of unites are restricted to low-to moderate income households. The program complements existing affordable multifamily energy programs like SOMAH and LIWP

Name: Kaylee D'Amico
Title: Marketing & Outreach Specialist
Organization: California State Treasurer's Office
Organization Type: Other Local Government, State Government/Agency
Email: kaylee.damico@treasurer.ca.gov
Phone: 916-653-3038
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding, Residential
Best Practices

California Hub for Energy Efficiency Financing Residential Energy Efficiency Loan Program

Loans from $2,500 to $50,000 for owners or renters of single-family residences with rates between 3.48% and 8.12%.

Name: Kaylee D'Amico
Title: Marketing & Outreach Specialist
Organization: California State Treasurer's Office
Organization Type: State Government/Agency
Email: kaylee.damico@treasurer.ca.gov
Phone: 916-653-3036
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding, Residential
Best Practices

California Hub for Energy Efficiency Financing Small Business EE Financing Program

Leases and equipment finance agreements from $10,000 to $5 million with terms up to 10 years for small businesses and nonprofits which can be combined with utility incentives and financing programs.

Name: Kaylee D'Amico
Title: Marketing & Outreach Specialist
Organization: California State Treasurer's Office
Organization Type: State Government/Agency
Email: kaylee.damico@treasurer.ca.gov
Phone: 916-653-3037
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Businesses, Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding
Sectors Targeted: Commercial, Nonprofit
Best Practices

CHP for Resiliency in Critical Infrastructure

This fact sheet provides an overview on using CHP to protect critical infrastructure, and how CHP can help create a more resilient and modern grid that keeps communities safe and protects businesses in the event of a large-scale power outage.

Organization: DOE Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
Organization Type: Federal Government/Agency
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Businesses, Climate Planning, Energy Resilience, Energy Saving Solutions, Public Agencies, Residential
Best Practices

Developing a Zero Net Energy Roadmap

Steps to success: Benchmark/audit, Prioritize, Track Progress

Name: Alelia Parenteau
Title: Energy & Climate Manager
Organization: City of Santa Barbara
Organization Type: City or County
Email: Aparenteau@SantaBarbaraca.gov
Phone: 805-564-5474
Region: Central Coast
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Businesses, Climate Planning, Codes and Standards, Data Requests and Analysis, Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding, Public Agencies, Sustainability
Best Practices

Empower Procurement: E-Building Procurement Initiative

Empower Procurement is excited to launch their new E-building Procurement Initiative. This program aims to tackle six initiatives: energy efficient products, expert energy services contractors, fuel switching resources: planning and installation, targeted specifications for low-energy building systems, new approaches to procurement operations, and training on organizations benchmarking and procurement metrics. The goal of this initiative is to build a collaborative network with local governments that provides opportunities for streamlined and cooperative procurement, while identifying challenges for electrification – particularly in existing government buildings. The product of this initiative will be represented in developed resources and best practices that are useful to the network.

Name: Renee Lafrenz
Title: Senior Manager
Organization: Empower Procurement
Organization Type: Other Private Sector Business
Email: rlafrenz@energy-solution.com
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Businesses, Distributed Energy Resources, Energy Saving Solutions, Outreach and Engagement, Partnerships, Public Agencies
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

Empower Procurement: E-Fleet Accelerator

The E-Fleet Accelerator offers school districts, higher education, governments, and select fleet operators support for the transition to electrified fleets. Transforming asset classes represents unique procurement barriers for institutional buyers. Fleet electrification is a prime example of this, and this PI will focus on addressing common gaps to improve the adoption of electric fleets for various purposes across diverse sectors. Our team provides customized insights to identify new opportunities to adopt electric fleets, and ensure successful fulfillment of electrification plans.

Organization: Prospect Silicon Valley
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Climate Planning, Electric Vehicles and Clean Mobility
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

Empower Procurement: Products Procurement Initiative

This Initiative provides free assessment to troubleshoot procurement processes. You will find tailored resources to help with procurement barriers. It has streamlined access to DERs product information as well as guidance on technology solutions to help make informed DERs purchasing decisions. The Products Procurement Initiative is designed to provide an opportunity for buyers to learn more about energy-efficient products and possible opportunities for cost savings.

Organization: Prospect Silicon Valley
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Climate Planning, Energy Resilience, Financing/Funding
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

Energy Reach Code Ordinance

Reach codes that exceed state standards, either voluntary or mandatory.

Name: Misti Bruceri
Title: Principal
Organization: Cities of Palo Alto and Chula Vista
Organization Type: Other Private Sector Business
Email: mistib@comcast.net
Phone: 707-477-1768
Region: Greater Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco Bay Area
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Businesses, Codes and Standards, Energy Saving Solutions, Public Agencies, Residential
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

Federal stimulus-funded local and regional energy programs

After the last major economic downturn, the federal government adopted the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), which provided stimulus funding for priorities including energy efficiency retrofits through the DOE’s Better Buildings Initiative. In California, three regions received millions of dollars to support new building efficiency incentive and assistance programs that targeted privately owned buildings and spurred economic opportunities for the hard-hit building trades. Twelve years later, those regions are now operating as Regional Energy Networks, with stable ratepayer funding authorized by the CPUC to continue offering services like BayREN’s Business programs. Recognizing that incentives and other financial mechanisms are critical for making the investment in energy efficient infrastructure more affordable and accessible to businesses, the BayREN Business program offers rebates, financing, and one-stop-shop technical assistance to ensure small and medium businesses can leverage all available energy saving programs and minimize out-of-pocket expenses. While this is an old example, it may help local governments consider how to take advantage of major State and federal stimulus efforts to create long-lasting support for building retrofits that also strengthen economic recovery. They may also consider how to design new or increased upgrade incentives for small or distressed businesses.

Organization: BayREN
Organization Type: Other Local Government
Region: San Diego, San Francisco Bay Area
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Businesses, Distributed Energy Resources, Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

Financing energy upgrades through CHEEF – GoGreen Financing

The California Hub for Energy Efficiency Financing (CHEEF) is now offering three financing programs to help your constituents updraig their properties. The GoGreen Financing includes a Home, Business and Affordable Multifamily program. This kind of financing alleviates upfront cost barriers for retrofits and can be used in combination with rebates and incentives or on its own! They hope local governments promote the financing program with their constituents who are waiting to take their next step on their energy efficiency plans!

Name: Kaylee D'Amico
Title: Marketing, Education and Outreach Specialist
Organization: California Hub for Energy Efficiency Financing, State Treasurer's Office
Organization Type: State Government/Agency
Email: Kaylee.DAmico@treasurer.ca.gov
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Businesses, Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding, Public Agencies, Residential
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments, Residential
Best Practices

Green & Healthy Homes Initiative

The Green & Healthy Homes Initiative (GHHI) is dedicated to breaking the link between unhealthy housing and unhealthy families. Formerly the Coalition to End Childhood Lead Poisoning, GHHI replaces stand-alone housing intervention programs with an integrated, whole-house approach that produces sustainable, green, healthy and safe homes. Through this model, Marin County is improving health, economic and social outcomes for low income eligible families across the country.

Organization: Marin County
Organization Type: City or County
Region: San Francisco Bay Area
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Codes and Standards, Energy Resilience, Energy Saving Solutions, Residential, Sustainability
Sectors Targeted: Residential
Best Practices

Guiding constituents from education to energy services

It is important for local governments to raise awareness about the current programs available to conduct energy updates. BayREN has identified that interagency collaboration is the key to navigate the complex landscape of programs offered by many organizations. We recommend LG’s should aspire to have successful guidelines that include knowledge sharing, a seamless user experience, and scaling for constituents. BayREN identified that useful tools to share knowledge include meeting people where they are at, partnering with complimentary programs, identifying your target audience and determining the best method of outreach based on their needs. This, followed by partnerships to present various EE programs from varying agencies will make for a seamless user experience. Finally, BayREN recommends combining rebates and financing to achieve savings greater than monthly payments so constituents can implement energy savings and reach renewable goals.

Name: Tonya Veitch
Title: Senior Sustainability Analyst
Organization: County of Santa Clara
Organization Type: City or County
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Businesses, Distributed Energy Resources, Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding, Outreach and Engagement, Partnerships, Public Agencies, Residential
Sectors Targeted: Disadvantaged Communities, Local Governments
Best Practices

How do I keep track of energy efficiency program and policy changes relevant to local governments?

Energy efficiency in California is a hot topic, and constantly evolving. Some things local governments may want to keep track of include:

Organization: SEEC
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Energy Efficiency
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

Identifying, Prioritizing and Funding Energy Projects for Your Organization

Name: Rochelle Thomas
Title: Energy Manager
Organization: San Joaquin Valley Clean Energy Organization
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Email: rthomas@pesc.com
Phone: 559.490.1810
Region: Inland Empire, Central Coast, Sierra Nevada
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Businesses, Codes and Standards, Data Requests and Analysis, Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding, Grants Programs, Outreach and Engagement, Partnerships, Public Agencies, Sustainability
Sectors Targeted: Disadvantaged Communities, Local Governments
Best Practices

Institute for Local Government’s Beacon Program

ILG’s Beacon Program provides recognition and support for California local agencies that are working to build more vibrant and sustainable communities. Beacon honors voluntary efforts by cities, counties and special districts that are reducing greenhouse gas emissions, saving energy and adopting policies that promote sustainability.

Organization: Institute for Local Government
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Climate Planning, Codes and Standards, Data Requests and Analysis, Outreach and Engagement, Sustainability
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

Job Training with SOMAH

SOMAH in increasing access to solar jobs. 50% of participants in their training programs are either local hires (living in the community that the project is in) or a targeted hire (affordable housing residents, women, BIPOC, justice-impacted, single parents, facing barriers to employment). SOMAH provides a wage floor of 1.4x the local minimum wage and provides career development resources and workshops for trainees.

Name: Staci Hoell
Title: Workforce Development Manager
Organization: SOMAH
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Email: contact@calsomah.org
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Distributed Energy Resources, Renewable Energy & Storage, Workforce Development
Sectors Targeted: Disadvantaged Communities
Best Practices

Local Government Sustainable Energy Coalition

LGSEC is a statewide membership network representing local government interests to state agencies such as CPUC, CEC, and CARB. Together, LGSEC members advance sustainable energy and climate solutions to meet California’s climate and energy goals through knowledge exchange, targeted learning opportunities, and statewide collaboration. Sustainability staff can maximize staff capacity by becoming a member of the LGSEC to engage and represent their jurisdictions in statewide regulatory energy policy.

Name: Sarina Soor
Title: Project Manager
Organization: LGSEC
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Email: lgsec@lgc.org
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Businesses, Climate Planning, Distributed Energy Resources, Electric Vehicles and Clean Mobility, Energy Resilience, Energy Saving Solutions, Partnerships, Public Agencies, Residential, Sustainability
Sectors Targeted: Disadvantaged Communities, Local Governments
Best Practices

Local Governments as Innovation Partners

During technology development, Local Governments can serve as excellent partners for pilot or demonstration projects. It is a good best practice for local governments to partner with technology providers when they are applying for EPIC grants through the CEC. There will soon be a call for places section of the Empower Innovation website to help create connections for project partners.

Name: Katrina Leni-Konig
Title: Supervisor Technology Scale-up and Outreach, Assistant Tribal Liaison
Organization: California Energy Commission
Organization Type: State Government/Agency
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Grants Programs, Partnerships
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

New York Start-up Leverages Partnership to fund Microgrid Network

A New York start-up LO3 Energy leveraged group purchasing to fund the Brooklyn Microgrid network, which allows individuals to buy and sell renewable energy in a peer-to-peer network. This both increased community resilience to frequent power outages and supports local economic development while reducing the community’s carbon footprint.

Organization: LO3
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Region: Out of State
Topic Areas: Financing/Funding, Partnerships
Sectors Targeted: Commercial, Residential
Best Practices

Regional Decarbonization through Reach Codes

Reducing natural gas usage by analyzing various building types and establishing reach codes across the region. Awareness, availability, assuredness, and affordability.

Name: John Supp
Title: Account Services Manager
Organization: Silicon Valley Clean Energy
Organization Type: Electric Utility or CCA
Email: John.supp@svcleanenergy.org
Region: San Francisco Bay Area
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Businesses, Codes and Standards, Energy Saving Solutions, Partnerships, Public Agencies, Residential
Sectors Targeted: Residential
Best Practices

Regional Partnerships

Regional partnerships provide energy engineering, regional climate action, and climate program support. It takes a village to move the needle and evolve work to support the region. Collaboratives provide an umbrella for everyone to come together to progress forward and explore activities, funding, and innovative techniques that LGs aren’t in the position to do alone. Facilitating and sustaining relationships can go a long way.

Name: Anna Lowe
Title: Senior Regional Planner
Organization: SANDAG
Organization Type: Other Local Government
Email: anna.lowe@sandag.org
Region: San Diego
Topic Areas: Climate Planning, Energy Resilience, Partnerships
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

Resilience Hubs, Spaces and Blocks

Resilience Hubs, Spaces and Blocks are community-driven gathering places which are demonstrations for climate solutions, and serve to coordinate & exchange communication, distribute resources, and support community programming during emergencies and year-round. The Northern California Resilience Network, the cities of San Leandro and Oakland and the Disability Justice Culture Club based in Oakland are all working to help build more resilient neighborhoods and robust resilience hubs. Part of this effort was a Resilience Hubs Leadership training held between February and September 2021.

Name: Susan Silber
Title: Executive Director
Organization: NorCal Resilience Network
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Email: susan@norcalresilience.org
Region: North Coast, Sacramento Valley, San Francisco Bay Area, Sierra Nevada, San Joaquin Valley
Topic Areas: Climate Planning, Partnerships, Sustainability
Sectors Targeted: Disadvantaged Communities
Best Practices, Funding Resources

Self-Generation Incentive Program

The CPUC’s Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP) offers rebates for installing energy storage technology at both residential and non-residential facilities. These storage technologies include battery storage systems that can function during a power outage.

Depending on the battery and how much you are using it, batteries can provide power for several hours, or longer. Battery storage can be an important component of a more robust emergency preparedness plan in the event of a power outage.

In preparation for the next wildfire season, the CPUC has authorized funding of more than $1 billion through 2024 for SGIP. This funding includes prioritization of communities living in high fire-threat areas, communities that have experienced two or more utility Public Safety Power Shut-off (PSPS) events, as well as low income and medically vulnerable customers. The funds are also available for “critical facilities” that support community resilience in the event of a PSPS or wildfire.

Name: Darcie Houck
Title: Commissioner
Organization: CPUC
Organization Type: State Government/Agency
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Businesses, Clean Energy, Climate Change, Climate Planning, Energy Efficiency, Energy Resilience, Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding, Incentives, Renewable Energy & Storage, Residential
Sectors Targeted: Disadvantaged Communities
Best Practices

SoCalREN Case Study: Conejo Valley Unified School District

After enrolling in late 2013, the Conejo Valley Unified School District (CVUSD) worked alongside the SoCalREN Public Agency Program to identify and implement several energy efficiency projects.CVUSD is benefiting from the positive impacts these energy efficiency projects have had on their facilities, as well as the people who inhabit them including the nearly 19,000 students currently enrolled. By implementing efficiency upgrades, the District models smart energy behaviors while creating a learning environment where students and teachers can thrive.

Organization: SoCalREN
Organization Type: Other Local Government
Region: Greater Los Angeles
Topic Areas: Climate Planning, Energy Saving Solutions, Financing/Funding, Public Agencies
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

TerraVerde’s Economic Value of Resilience

TerraVerde’s defensible accounting methodology for quantifying the financial benefits of having solar + battery backup power resources. The Economic Value of Resilience equals the avoided costs of an otherwise applicable solution (i.e. equipment & installation, operation & maintenance, fuel costs, permits) plus the avoided cost of power interruption (i.e. business interruption costs, electrical equipment damages, IT system damages, productivity losses, and spoilage).

Name: David Burdick
Title: Executive Vice President
Organization: TerraVerde Energy
Organization Type: Other Private Sector Business
Email: david@terraverde.energy
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Businesses, Energy Saving Solutions, Public Agencies
Best Practices

The Clean Coalition’s Standardized Value-of-Resilience

The Clean Coalition has created a standardized VOR that will allow all stakeholders to effectively consider VOR when analyzing microgrid economics — making microgrid economics far more favorable. The increased valuation, in turn, will accelerate the proliferation of microgrids throughout the country and well beyond.

Name: Craig Lewis
Title: Executive Director
Organization: The Clean Coalition
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Email: craig@clean-coalition.org
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Climate Planning, Codes and Standards, Energy Resilience
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

What are resources local governments can leverage for energy efficiency activities?

  • Your utilities: The Investor-Owned Utilities (IOUs) of the state are Administrators of ratepayer-funded energy efficiency programming, which includes financial incentives and technical assistance for energy efficiency activities. The IOUs also work with local governments on special projects under the Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan, through local government partnerships (see examples here). Contact your utility to learn more. Publicly-owned and municipal utilities also often provide incentives and support for energy efficiency. (If you don’t know who at the utility level you should be contacting, contact the Coordinator.)
  • Regional Energy Networks (RENs) and other EE Program Administrator: So far, the non-IOU Administrators of energy efficiency programming are BayREN, SoCalREN, and the Consumer Choice Aggregator (CCA) Marin Clean Energy (MCE).
  • State Agencies: You can see energy-relevant resources and workshops offered by the California Energy Commission (CEC), the CA Air Resources Board (CARB, or ARB), and California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) by clicking on these links. A great 101 EE overview of the makeup and resources of these agencies, presented by Jody London, is available here.
  • Federal agencies: Check out posts on this website of the U.S Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA)’s State and Local Climate Action newsletter, which shares a digest of funding announcements and webinars provided by different federal agencies.
  • Consider developing an energy efficiency fund: A great way to find funding for energy efficiency is to take the savings from a funded, implemented energy efficiency project, and develop a fund for further projects. For resources on this – and example funds led by California local governments, click here.
Organization: SEEC
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Energy Efficiency, Financing/Funding
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
Best Practices

What does Local Government action on energy efficiency look like?

  • Develop an energy efficiency, sustainability, or climate action plan: A plan is a power tool to transparently set goals, get the many stakeholders of energy projects on the same page, optimize project selection, and check baselines to ensure you can measure project success. Follow the strategic planning or climate action plan links for more resources covering planning, and for examples of climate action plans drafted and adopted by other California local governments. SEEC also provides trainings on use of the no-cost ClearPath tool for development of a strong climate action plan.
  • “Lead by example” and make EE improvements to the City: Implement energy efficient improvements in your own buildings. Improvements may include capital equipment upgrades (to lighting fixtures, boilers, air conditioning units, fan or pump motors, wastewater or other industrial facility energy-consuming equipment), or retro-commissioning of how that equipment works (e.g., checking the setpoint temperatures, scheduling, and staging of equipment, ensuring controls are working properly, testing and balancing, etc.).

EE improvements may be integrated into existing capital planning – EE improvements may also paired with clean energy installs or a campaign to reduce vehicle miles traveled (VMT) by implementing an employee carpool program.

If you’re looking for data on the most cost-effective project to start with, it may be a good idea to benchmark your buildings first and learn what buildings are using what amounts of energy. For more information on benchmarking, visit the Benchmarking Resources page. Looking for benefits of benchmarking? Check out this post.

Some local governments may prefer to start leading by example by implementing a program to encourage energy-efficient employee behavior (e.g., encouraging turning off the lights, using energy efficient computer setting, or low hot water usage). For best practices in implementing successful behavioral programs, see this post.

  • Educate, promote and support EE improvements in the community: Local governments are a critical source of information and organization for their communities. Local governments can support residential, commercial, industrial, and/or agricultural energy efficiency by promoting programs offered by the state, utilities and others, or by offering programs themselves. Programs may include community challenges and campaigns motivating behavioral changes, residential or small business assessments, direct installs, or incentives for energy efficient lighting or HVAC, green business programs, and more.
  • Set ordinances or local codes that raise the bar on EE in the city and community: California’s energy code (aka California’s Building Energy Efficiency Standards, or Title 24, Part 6) spurs energy efficiency by requiring energy efficiency construction. Your jurisdiction can raise that bar even higher by adopting a Tier 1 or Tier 2 “reach” code to set energy efficiency requirements 15 or 30 percent higher than the energy code. Or, rather than taking a percent-above approach, you can hone in on measures or specific installs that may clarify the requirements and help you meet goals in your climate or energy action plan (for example, requiring solar photovoltaics, or cool roofs). For more on this see reach codes.
  • Support and increase EE code compliance: The energy code is a major driver of energy savings – but your community won’t see the benefits if it’s not enforced. Make sure your building department staff know the current energy code, and consider what your jurisdiction can do to encourage compliance from the building community – including technical assistance and energy efficient recommendations during plan review (either by city staff or by a volunteer buildings or energy community committee), online permitting, permitting expediting or fee reductions, and/or connection to energy efficiency incentives.

ll of these types of activities are actions promoted under the CPUC’s California Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan.

For numerous examples of what actions local governments are taking, check out Local Government on the EE Strategic Plan.

Organization: SEEC
Organization Type: Nonprofit Organization
Region: Statewide
Topic Areas: Building Decarbonization, Codes and Standards, Energy Efficiency
Sectors Targeted: Local Governments
  • Topic Area

  • Additional notes of interest

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