Energy Commission Holds Workshops to Support EPIC R&D Investment Plan

The California Energy Commission invites the public to workshops March 13, 14 and 16 to help develop its 2018-2020 EPIC Triennial Investment Plan.

The plan is the Energy Commission’s proposed strategy for administering Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) program funds. Funds come from rates charged to Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E) and Southern California Edison (SCE) customers. They are used to bring new clean energy ideas to fruition by supporting researchers developing the next generation of innovations. Some of these emerging technologies are in use by early adopters and are being tested in homes and businesses.

Workshop schedule

During the March 13 workshop stakeholders and the public will have an opportunity to receive information and provide feedback on future research needs to support California’s distributed energy resources (DER) goals. The workshop will include opening comments from Energy Commission Chair Robert Weisenmiller, a California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) presentation on the DER Action Plan, discussions on the proposed DER initiatives in the investment plan and presentations on current and planned research. Details for participating in the workshop are in the public notice.

At the March 14 workshop, Energy Commission staff will present draft funding initiatives for the investment plan. The initiatives will give stakeholders a view of Energy Commission plans for the next investment plan. This workshop will also feature an opening address from Chair Weisenmiller, a CPUC overview of the EPIC program and a presentation by the investor-owned utilities. A public comment period will follow. Details for participating are in the public notice.

The March 16 workshop will include discussions on active and potential future areas of climate research for electricity systems such as increasing the resiliency of the electricity system to climate change and extreme weather events. The discussion will also evaluate strategies to mitigate the climate impacts of the electricity system on the environment and public health and safety.

Energy Commission staff will also discuss the Natural Gas Research Program climate research during the March 16 workshop. That program, which outlines proposed natural gas research, is separate from the EPIC program and provides funding for climate research that benefits natural gas ratepayers. The Natural Gas Research Budget Plan is developed annually and will be submitted to the CPUC for approval. View the public notice for details on participating in the workshop.

The EPIC program was created by the CPUC in 2011 and is primarily administered by the Energy Commission. About $120 million is invested annually to support innovative technologies and approaches that bring clean energy ideas to market and that benefit PG&E, SDG&E and SCE customers. The plan will be submitted to the CPUC for approval by May 1.

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California Energy Commission

The California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency created by the Legislature in 1974.
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