Energy Commmission Launches Partnership with Local Governments to Improve Energy Performance

As policy is adopted that moves towards meeting California's environmental goals, it is clear that energy efficiency is a key tool. However, on the local level residents and building owners need simple access to understandable, reliable information, as well as consistent engagement with service providers.

The Local Government Challenge is a partnership between the California Energy Commission and local governments to support the development of innovative solutions to improve energy performance in communities. In June, the Energy Commission awarded 13 grants to local governments totaling $10.2 million.

"Local governments touch every single significant construction project that happens in the state," said Commissioner Andrew McAllister, who is the Energy Commissioner's lead on energy efficiency. "They are not often taken into account during state level policy discussions and face many barriers to properly manage the built environment in their jurisdictions. The Local Government Challenge will help spawn innovative practical solutions to many of these barriers."

Five of the grants have an implementation and installation component and the remaining eight are planning activities. Projects vary from accelerating multifamily building upgrades in the Bay Area to installing a solar system on the roof of city hall in Del Mar.

The following communities were awarded funds:

• City of Del Mar - $388,893
• City of Galt - $645,800
• City of San Diego - $1,991,444
• City of San Leandro - $1,995,963
• City of Santa Cruz - $523,672
• City of Santa Barbara - $186,708
• County of San Luis Obispo - $327,206
• Energy Council in several Bay Area jurisdictions - $1,000,000
• Gateway Cities Council of Governments in Southeast Los Angeles County - $466,000
• Marin Clean Energy - $1,720,343
• Marin General Services Authority - $275,008
• San Bernardino Council of Governments - $250,635
• Ventura County Regional Energy Alliance - $427,544

The Local Government Challenge grant program is part of the Energy Commission's Existing Buildings Energy Efficiency Action Plan, which provides a roadmap to transform California's existing residential, commercial, and public buildings to become high performing and energy efficient. The plan is an important tool in implementing components of Senate Bill 350, which requires the Energy Commission to establish targets and meet goals to double energy efficiency in buildings.

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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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