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Renewables Program in California is Fully Subscribed

More than $8 million in renewable energy and efficiency subsidies in California have been spent, according to the California Energy Commission (CEC).

SACRAMENTO, California – The state’s load reduction program involves $50 million in funding under Assembly Bill 970, with a goal of reducing peak electrical load by 161 MW by this June. Overall power reduction from the program is expected to be 220 MW. By February 9, the project’s six components had earmarked all the money needed to free up electricity from the overburdened grid during crunch times, especially in hot summer weekday afternoons. The innovative efficiency and renewables program is fully subscribed with an allocation of $8.5 million in grants to eleven entities. That program has a goal of reducing peak load by 48.4 MW through renewable electricity generation and demand reduction equipment. A program to switch traffic lights to energy-efficient light-emitting diodes has awarded its allocation of $10 million to 44 public agencies to reduce peak demand by 6 MW, while the program to develop energy-smart buildings outfitted with advanced meters and demand responsive software to automatically dim lights and adjust thermostats is currently allocating its $10 million. A half dozen grants will save 83 MW. The plan to change buildings roofs to light colored materials has allocated most of its $9.4 million budget, to save 21.4 MW, and the project to improve lighting and heating, ventilation and air conditioning in state buildings and public universities has allocated $5.5 million to reduce energy by 80 MW. The sixth component of the AB 970 program is to improve energy efficient in wastewater treatment and agricultural energy retrofits, and has a budget of $5 million to save 43 MW. The funding was approved following high electricity prices and outages in California last summer. Other efficiency projects reducing peak demand may also be eligible for grants.