A new report, Closing the California Clean Energy Divide by California Housing Partnership, Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE), and Clean Energy Group finds that affordable multifamily-housing property owners in two utility territories – Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas & Electric – have the potential to increase savings by nearly 100% over solar-alone by adding storage, while increasing upfront investment by less than 30%, essentially eliminating their annual electric bills. This report is particularly exciting given recent information on the energy burden of low-income communities (often living in multi-family affordable housing), as well as new state resources going towards multi-family solar through AB 693.
As shared on the report’s webpage, “California has installed numerous integrated solar and battery storage projects; however, few have served low-income tenants or owners of affordable rental housing. This disparity is due to many factors, including a lack of information about the economics of these systems in multifamily housing. To provide that needed information, Clean Energy Group, California Housing Partnership, and Center for Sustainable Energy, with analytical support from Geli, are embarking on a series of reports on solar and storage in California affordable multifamily rental housing.”
A particularly compelling chart from the report, showing changes in costs, savings, and paybacks achieved by adding energy storage to solar installations in PG&E, SCE and SDG&E territories is copied below. In some cases, pairing solar with storage reduces the payback by three years.
As Wayne Waite, policy director at California Housing Partnership shares: “Many affordable housing owners are interested in exploring energy storage, both for the economic benefits and improved resiliency of a property. This report fills the information gap for owners so they can better understand these emerging technologies.” (Read more on AltEnergyMag.com here.)
For more on energy storage (including installs at schools, jails, and museums in California), click here. For innovative projects to reduce energy burdens in public housing, check out Woodland’s zero net energy housing for agricultural workers, or energy efficiency projects being implemented through the Mendocino and Lake Counties Energy Watch local government partnership with PG&E.