Last summer, an extended heat wave in California caused unprecedented high energy demand that threatened electricity outages in communities across the state. The state, cities, and energy providers took collective actions to communicate the critical need for reducing energy consumption. While the electricity grid came very close to running short on supply and causing outages, the behavior of communities, residents, and businesses to curtail power use during specific periods of time made the difference in keeping California powered.
As we prepare for what is anticipated to be another hot summer prompting strain on power resources, there is a crucial need to prevent future outages. Clean Power Alliance has launched two new opportunities within its Power Response Program to help residents, property owners, and businesses in Southern California with summer readiness.
Power Response is a demand response program that offers financial incentives to reduce electricity usage during times of higher than projected energy demand. The program features four tracks to participate, making it available to all CPA customers so everyone has the chance to save energy and receive incentives.
In January 2022, Power Response Smart Home launched as the first track of CPA’s Power Response program. Smart Home provides residents with eligible smart devices (such as Nest thermostats, ChargePoint EV chargers and others) financial incentives for enrolling and continuing participation on an annual basis.
When energy demand is higher than expected, CPA sends an “energy saving event” alert to enrolled participants asking to reduce electricity use. Depending on the enrolled program, participants’ devices manually or automatically reduce usage through small setting adjustments that add up over multiple energy saving events in a season. To date, these united efforts have helped reduce 800,000 kilowatt hours of energy, or the equivalent of taking 100 homes off the energy grid for a year.
Now, multifamily communities and commercial leaders can easily join energy conservation efforts as enrolled participants of the new Power Response Multifamily Community Program and Power Response Commercial Leaders Program launching this month.
For multifamily properties that meet the affordable eligibility requirements, the Power Response Multifamily Community Program provides residents and property owners smart thermostats and program-specific financial incentives for enrolling and participating in energy saving events. Eligible properties receive $130 per installed device and an annual $30 participation incentive per enrolled device. Residents receive a newly installed smart thermostat, as well as an annual $40 participation incentive.
Similarly, businesses and public sector entities can enroll in the Power Response Commercial Leaders program to participate in energy conservation. Under this new opportunity, enrolled businesses collaborate with CPA on a custom energy savings plan and can earn from $400-$6,000 per year depending on size of business and amount of energy conserved during commercial energy saving events.
Residential customers that do not have eligible smart devices but are interested in conserving energy by manually adjusting their device settings can enroll in CPA’s Power Response Home program, which is scheduled to launch later this spring. For CARE/FERA customers, an additional $20 enrollment incentive is also offered to help mitigate costs.
Participation in these programs provides a strategic opportunity to increase reliability of the electrical grid and contribute to a more sustainable and resilient Southern California.