CPUC Commissioner Mike Florio laid out some of California’s policy directions, focusing on the four “preferred resources:” energy efficiency, renewables, DR, and energy storage. “We are preparing for a world in which preferred resources become integral part of the reliability of the grid, evolving from mere condiments at the table.

Florio reported on the CPUC’s first draft study on the cost effectiveness of net energy metering for distributed solar generation, a major utility and ratepayer advocate concern. Yes there are transfers. Wealthier ratepayers have benefitted from solar incentives, but they also pay more in rates and upper tier usage. The Commission will weigh changes to the tiers charged for residential usage. The study continues; Florio reports increased policy focus on specific locations in the grid where it is most valued. “Too much on a circuit creates problems” as the grid was designed to be unidirectional.

Thus far, the California Solar Initiative has provided incentives for 162,000 rooftop systems with a gross generating capacity of 1.6 GW. This will rise to 1.9 GW at end of CSI. Florio noted that incentives are mostly out and solar industry stronger than ever. We’d learn later that there are more solar workers in California than actors! And in addition to the CSI, are other solar incentive programs, SGIP, RAM, and REMAT.

Two other developments: The Commission is now focused on “wholesale demand response (DR). Through the aggregation of commercial and industrial users, wholesale DR has the potential to lower lighting and air conditioning levels by imperceptible amounts that cumulatively are significant. The Commission is also proceeding with on-bill repayment of energy efficiency financing provided by third parties. Private funds may be supported by a loan loss reserve.

Blog Posts

Available Pages


Archives by Month: