Contact: Virginia Nicols, Corporate & Community Relations, EcoMotion

(949) 450-7153,

Irvine, CA October 22, 2008

Sonoma County Asks EcoMotion to Assist with Feasibility Study for AB 811 Program

Scaled Up Energy Independence Program Could Reach Thousands of Residents

After helping design the State’s first AB 811 program in Palm Desert, EcoMotion has been hired by Sonoma County to provide background and research for the second such program – one that is likely to be ten times larger than its predecessors.

In August, 2008, Governor Schwarzenegger signed Assembly Bill 811 into law as an “urgency measure,” giving city and county governments throughout the state the authority to finance permanent home or business energy improvements. The improvements are considered to be for the “public good,” and as such are treated as tax assessments, to be paid back through the property tax system. A number of cities and counties have expressed interest in setting up such programs. To date, only two programs have come into being: the BerkeleyFIRST program and Palm Desert’s Energy Independence Program.

Sonoma County aims to use the program to help achieve its climate protection commitments, and in addition, to help stimulate “green” jobs in the region. The program includes water conservation measures in addition to energy efficiency and renewable energy measures. It will be made available to the nine cities within the county as well as to unincorporated areas.

EcoMotion’s role in the feasibility analysis and business plan is to help forecast participation rates, and review costs and financing options for a variety of scenarios. As part of the market analysis, EcoMotion staff will visit the County to identify eligible properties and potential loan volume. EcoMotion will also provide various staffing and marketing recommendations based on its experience with Palm Desert as well as its history with many other community-based programs.


Based in Irvine, CA, EcoMotion’s mission is to promote positive change for a healthy, sustainable future. To accomplish its mission, it applies the power of positive example and the power of the increment (many small actions building on other small actions) in the energy-related programs it designs and implements for organizations, cities and utilities.

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