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Aerial Santabarbaraca10 28 08 Blog

Tri-county Community Choice Energy efforts continue, with encouraging forward movement from local governments. Read on to find out the latest developments, along with ways that you can support.

Central Coast Power Website

The local government staff evaluating Community Choice Energy recently named the tri-county effort and launched their official website: www.CentralCoastPower.org.

As the website states, “Central Coast Power is a consortium of local governments that has formed to explore the feasibility of a Community Choice Energy (CCE) program that could serve San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura County electric utility customers. An Advisory Working Group oversees the CCE effort, including the development of a feasibility study to determine whether CCE is a viable option for the region.”

The website offers a wide variety of resources that help to explain how CCE works, why it is worth exploring as an option for our region, and how other communities in California have put this program to use. The support these local governments are putting behind CCE is further demonstrated by an Outreach Toolkit that Central Coast Power developed, which includes messaging and key talking points that they are encouraging supporters to adopt as well.

Feasibility Study Progress

As noted above, Central Coast Power is developing a feasibility study to help evaluate and quantify the benefits, costs and risks of launching a Community Choice program. The study is projected to be completed in Summer 2017, and will provide valuable information about the electricity rates, greenhouse gas reductions, and economic benefits that a local CCE program might offer. Moreover, it will serve as the basis upon which local governments decide whether or not to move forward into the next steps of forming a CCE program.

How You Can Support Community Choice Energy

The time just before the study is completed and immediately following its release will be a critical time for outreach to elected officials and securing their support to move forward with Community Choice Energy. Here’s what you can do TODAY to help make CCE a reality in our region:

(1) Go to www.CentralCoastPower.org and sign-up for their mailing list for official government updates.

(2) Talk to your candidates and elected officials about Community Choice Energy, using the talking points provided by Central Coast Power. Ask their position on the issue, making sure they understand both what CCE is and how it could benefit our region.

(3) Stay tuned for Community Choice Forums in early 2017.

(4) Contact Michael Chiacos, CEC’s Energy & Climate Program Director, at mchiacos@cecmail.org if you want to be more involved.

Nicole Wald
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Nicole Wald

Nicole Wald is a freelance writer and educator in Santa Barbara, CA with a passion for helping the planet. She supports CEC in developing content for social media, PR, marketing, and the annual Earth Day Festival. Part of this work includes gathering stories of people along the Central Coast who consciously take steps to reduce their carbon footprint.
Nicole Wald
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