What is CleanPowerSF?
CleanPowerSF is a not-for-profit program of the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC), which partners with PG&E to provide cleaner energy at competitive rates to San Francisco electricity customers. California law allows cities and counties like San Francisco to pool the electricity demand of their residents and businesses, and purchase electricity on behalf of those customers. These programs are called Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) programs.
CleanPowerSF began serving customers in May 2016, giving residential and commercial electricity consumers in San Francisco the option to have more of their electricity supplied from clean, renewable sources—such as solar and wind—at competitive rates. By law, CleanPowerSF is an opt-out program; customers can stay with PG&E’s generation service if they choose to do so. When customers join CleanPowerSF’s service, they reduce the carbon footprint associated with their electricity service, support the growth of local renewable energy projects, and combat global climate change.
What is Community Choice Aggregation (CCA)?
In 2002, Assembly Bill 117 was passed to establish Community Choice Aggregation (CCA). The law allows a local jurisdiction to become the default electric supplier in its jurisdiction, and offers an opportunity for local communities to influence the sources of their electricity. CleanPowerSF is San Francisco’s CCA program. Many California communities operate CCA programs, and CCAs now serve nearly 2 million customers in the state. For more information on other CCA programs, visit cal-cca.org.
Does CleanPowerSF replace PG&E?
No. CleanPowerSF works in partnership with PG&E. We supply our cleaner electricity to PG&E’s power lines, and PG&E continues to deliver that energy to your home or business. PG&E also continues to send you your bill, turn electricity on and off when you move, maintain power lines, and respond to outages and emergencies.
Who operates CleanPowerSF?
CleanPowerSF is operated by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC), the same clean energy experts who have been generating 100% greenhouse gas-free electricity from the Hetch Hetchy Power System for vital City services and facilities for 100 years.
Can I participate in CleanPowerSF if I don’t live in San Francisco?
Unfortunately, no, but programs like CleanPowerSF are available in many California cities and counties. Check with your local government to see if there is a CCA program in your service area, or visit www.cal-cca.org to find other active CCA programs.
Why was I automatically enrolled in CleanPowerSF?
CleanPowerSF operates under a state program called Community Choice Aggregation (CCA), which was approved by the California legislature in 2002. This law requires that all customers are automatically enrolled, and are also offered the option to opt out. This means that you now have a choice of who provides your energy, and can remain with CleanPowerSF or opt out and return to PG&E generation services.
How do I know when my account is being enrolled in CleanPowerSF?
When your account is scheduled for enrollment (either automatically or because you signed up for early enrollment), you will receive two notices from CleanPowerSF prior to your enrollment in the program. These notices describe the program terms and conditions and your right to opt out.
After enrollment into CleanPowerSF, you will receive another two notices over a two-month period reminding you of the terms and conditions and the opportunity to return to PG&E electric supply service. After this initial enrollment and opt out period, you will be subject to PG&E’s terms and conditions if you choose to opt out.
CleanPowerSF believes strongly in giving San Francisco energy customers the power to choose. If you prefer not to receive CleanPowerSF service, you can opt out at any time after your service is scheduled for enrollment. To opt out, visit cleanpowersf.org or call 415-554-0773.
How do CleanPowerSF rates compare to PG&E?
CleanPowerSF’s default Green service offers San Franciscans cleaner electricity than they currently receive from PG&E at competitive rates. While PG&E rates fluctuate throughout the year, CleanPowerSF will set electricity rates once a year. Find CleanPowerSF rates at cleanpowersf.org/rates.
How do I know you won’t raise your rates once I join?
Our goal is to set one rate for the entire year, providing customers more rate stability. Rates will always be set through the same public process that is used to set water and sewer rates here in San Francisco. This process includes San Francisco Rate Fairness Board review, San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) review, and approval by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. Members of the public are welcome to comment at publicly noticed hearings for each step of the process. More information on public meetings is available at sfwater.org.
Where does CleanPowerSF energy come from?
CleanPowerSF sources more of your electricity mix from California-certified renewable resources such as solar and wind. Our Green service delivers 43% renewable energy and features renewable resources like wind power from the Shiloh Wind Project in Solano County and the Geysers Geothermal Project in Sonoma County. It also includes conventional sources like hydroelectric power - a greenhouse gas-free source of electricity - and natural gas.
Our SuperGreen service features 100% renewable electricity. This service features renewable wind power from the Shiloh Wind Project in Solano County and solar power from Sunset Reservoir in San Francisco.
CleanPowerSF plans to invest ratepayer funds into building new, renewable energy facilities in California and the Bay Area. This “build-out” will create green jobs in our region and in other parts of the state. Starting in 2019, CleanPowerSF will source some of its supply through a 22-year contract to purchase power from a new solar energy project being build in northern Los Angeles County. In addition, CleanPowerSF has entered into a 15-year contract to purchase power from a new wind power facility that will be built in the Tehachapi-Mohave Wind Resource Area in Kern County, starting in 2020.
What are the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions factors for CleanPowerSF’s products and are they certified by The Climate Registry?
CleanPowerSF’s GHG emissions factor for the 2016 calendar year was 186 pounds of carbon dioxide equivalents (lbs CO2e) per megawatt-hour (MWh) for our Green product and 0.00 lbs. CO2e/MWh for our 100% renewable SuperGreen product. CleanPowerSF will be publishing its calendar year 2017 emissions factor in the coming months.
CleanPowerSF is in the process of becoming a member of The Climate Registry (TCR), and we expect to have a TCR-verified emissions factor for 2017 for our Green service by the end of 2018. You can find out more about CleanPowerSF’s emissions factor here.
Does CleanPowerSF exceed the Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) Requirements?
California’s Renewable Portfolio Standard requires that all load serving entities provide a minimum of 28% renewable energy to customers, increasing to 33% by 2020. Our Green product currently offers 43% renewable energy, exceeding the minimum renewable content required by the State of California by 15%. With SuperGreen, our 100% renewable energy product, we acquire an additional 72% renewable energy to meet 100% of each participating customer’s usage. By participating in CleanPowerSF, customers are committing to “green up” the balance of their energy demand with renewable energy.
Will CleanPowerSF retire Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) on my company’s behalf?
CleanPowerSF retires RECs on behalf of all our customers each year. CleanPowerSF does not track REC retirement by individual customer. However, we ensure that we have acquired and retired sufficient renewable energy for 100% of SuperGreen customers’ usage over the course of the year, including your company’s usage if you are a SuperGreen customer.
Will CleanPowerSF provide documentation of Renewable Energy Credit (REC) retirement?
Each year CleanPowerSF completes a Power Source Disclosure Report and Power Content Label for our Green and SuperGreen service, as required by state law and regulation. CleanPowerSF submits this information each year to the California Energy Commission, the state regulatory agency that is responsible for verifying retail seller power content claims. The Power Source Disclosure Report and Power Content Labels include power supply information for the Green and SuperGreen products for a calendar year, including the RECs retired within the Western Renewable Energy Generation Information System (WREGIS) for each product. CleanPowerSF’s Power Content Label can be found here.
Does CleanPowerSF service count toward Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Power points through the U.S. Green Building Council?
Yes, your business may be eligible to receive LEED Green Power credits if you sign up for SuperGreen. Contact us for more details.
Is my business still eligible for PG&E’s energy efficiency rebates?
Yes, your eligibility for PG&E energy efficiency programs won’t change when you become a CleanPowerSF customer.
Can I use PG&E’s automated benchmarking service and Energy Star Portfolio Manager with CleanPowerSF?
Yes, you can use PG&E’s automated benchmarking service and Energy Star Portfolio Manager with CleanPowerSF. PG&E supplies third-party usage and charges through their benchmarking portal to Energy Star Portfolio Manager. To learn more, visit www.pge.com/benchmarking/.
Still have more questions?
No problem! Send your questions to CleanpowerSF@sfwater.org.