Community Choice Aggregators Celebrate 20th Anniversary of Legislation Allowing for CCAs in CA
In September, Clean Power Alliance and Community Choice Aggregators (CCA) across California celebrated the 20th anniversary of Assembly Bill 117, the legislation that enabled cities and counties across the state to create community choice energy programs. CCAs, also known as municipal aggregation programs, allow local governments to purchase renewable energy on behalf of residents and businesses and transmit that energy across existing transmission lines. Since the bill’s signing, the CCA community has grown to include 24 operational programs statewide, including CPA, providing renewable energy from wind, solar and geothermal sources to more than 11 million local customers and over 200 cities and counties across California. Los Angeles County Board Supervisor and CPA Board Vice Chair Sheila Kuehl was on the front lines of creating and launching CPA. “We established Clean Power Alliance when the energy system was very stable, and we built our plans from data and projections that reflected that stable energy system,” said Kuehl. “Then the market went haywire, and the immediate danger of climate change became very real. That required us to be flexible, as well as more aggressive about our default renewable energy levels. Our original default renewable energy level was 50%. Today, two-thirds of our cities are at 100% Green Power.” Since 2010, CCAs have signed contracts for 11 Gigawatts (GW) of new-construction, clean energy projects with over one-third of those projects already operational. That equates to more than $13 Billion invested by CCAs in long-term power purchase agreements and up to 11,000 union construction jobs.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, in 2020, CCAs procured approximately 13 billion kWh of electricity for local customers with CCAs serving as an effective option for communities aiming to secure increased local control over electricity sources, more green power than is offered by the default utility, and overall lower electricity prices.
Clean Power Alliance CEO Ted Bardacke recalls board members and city leaders working tirelessly in 2017 and 2018 to organize CPA’s first communities, whilesharing in the enthusiasm for significantly reducing the impact of greenhouse gas emissions, reducing costs and increasing local control over energy decisions.
“There was an incredible meeting of the minds that this was the right thing to do and the right time to do it,” said Bardacke. “And as momentum grew within Los Angeles County, bringing on Ventura County and most of the cities there really solidified the effort.” Since our founding in 2018, CPA has grown to serve over three million residents and businesses in Los Angeles and Ventura counties and has the distinction ofserving the most customers in the nation with 100% renewable energy. With 32 partner communities and growing, CPA customers were able to avoid over 928,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions in the past year by choosing clean energy options. CPA is proud of our customers’ commitment to renewable power and honored to be a member of the California CCA community. We express our deep appreciation for the local leaders and pioneers that overcame enormous obstacles to generate support for AB 117, helping create the path for California’s renewable energy future.
To learn more, take a look at this informative CalCCA video here.