Energy Commission Grant Helps City of San Leandro Go Green

The City of San Leandro’s Water Pollution Control Plant facility processes and treats wastewater for approximately 50,000 residents using 125 miles of sanitary sewer pipelines and 13 pump stations, making it the largest single electricity user under the city’s control. City officials wanted to reduce electricity costs and tackle their climate action plan goals.

The California Energy Commission’s Local Government Challenge provided the opportunity to help solve both issues. San Leandro secured nearly $2 million, the largest award from the challenge, from the competitive Energy Innovation Challenge grant.

San Leandro will use the money for upgrades at the Water Pollution Control Plant, highlighted by a 1-megawatt solar power generation system. The grant will also help fund high-efficiency LED lighting and a new automation system. These improvements will reduce electric power use at the plant by 53 percent, decrease greenhouse gas emissions by more than 2.7 million pounds annually, and save nearly $240,000 in annual energy costs, according to the city.

“The Energy Commission’s Local Government Energy Innovation Challenge fills a critical gap by providing resources directly to local governments, which is where the action is for ensuring that the state’s building stock is running as efficiently as possible,” said Commissioner Andrew McAllister, who is the Energy Commission’s lead on energy efficiency. “Optimizing energy use across the building stock is fundamental to achieving the city’s and state’s climate and energy goals. Our partnership with the City of San Leandro will help develop innovative solutions that meet the needs of local communities.”

The Energy Innovation Challenge grant program funds the deployment of innovative energy-efficiency projects that could serve as leading examples for other municipalities across the state. In total, the Energy Commission awarded $6.7 million to four municipal agencies.

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 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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