Climate Action Plan - Measure E-2.1
Increase Renewable Electricity
The County will develop a renewable energy program to achieve 90% renewable electricity for the unincorporated areas by 2030. Electricity generated from renewable energy will result in greenhouse gas emissions reductions, energy cost savings, decreased reliance on public utilities, and cleaner air.
- 2025 Target: Establish a renewable energy program
- 2030 Target: Achieve 90% renewable electricity for the unincorporated county
Where are we going?
This measure establishes a County Renewable Energy Program to achieve 90% renewable electricity for the unincorporated county by 2030, exceeding state requirements for the California Renewables Portfolio Standard. A community choice energy (CCE) feasibility report, finalized in September 2019, found that the County can achieve its renewable energy target at a 2% electricity bill savings for the average residential customer while providing local economic and environmental benefits. On April 6, 2021, the County's Board of Supervisors adopted updated Guiding Principles for the County's Community Choice Energy Program and as a result is currently in discussions to potentially participate in a local existing Community Choice Energy Joint Powers Authority to bring renewable energy to the grid. Community Choice Energy that allows cities and counties to purchase clean energy to meet the needs of local residents and businesses by aggregating the buying power of individual customers within a defined area to secure alternative energy supplies.
How is this measured?
The County expects to achieve a reduction of 255,991 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 through the increased use of electricity generated from renewable energy in the unincorporated area. Emissions reductions are calculated based on the difference between the amount of renewable energy required by the state (50% by 2030) and the amount of renewable energy supplied by the County’s renewable energy program (90% by 2030).
Why is this important?
The pooling of purchasing power to buy or generate electricity gives ratepayers the choice of where to purchase their power and to determine the mix of renewable energy sources. Choice and competition are the bedrock of CCE. Today, over 200 California towns, cities, and counties have CCE providers that serve more than 11 million customers. In San Diego County, the City of Solana Beach has operated the Solana Energy Alliance since 2018. The City of San Diego took the next step towards a CCE by approving a Joint Powers Authority (JPA) with the cities of La Mesa, Chula Vista, Imperial Beach, and Encinitas in 2019. The cities of Del Mar, Oceanside, and Solana Beach took action approve a JPA that would provide energy to local customers in 2021.
Electricity generated from renewable sources avoids greenhouse emissions from fossil fuel extraction, distribution, and use in electricity generation. Increasing renewable power decreases reliance on utility companies, reduces air pollution, and leads the County toward greater energy independence.