California’s electricity market is entering a remarkable and unprecedented period of uncertainty and transition. As California’s investor-owned utilities are increasingly consumed with serious and troubling concerns related to wildfire liabilities, financial solvency, and safety issues, local communities are stepping in with bold, locally controlled solutions to improve reliability, increase clean power delivery to customers, and reduce carbon emissions in transportation, buildings, and the electric sector.
Since 2010, more than 160 California cities and counties have formed or joined Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) programs, which now serve 10 million customers and growing.
What is Community Choice Aggregation?
Not-for-profit CCA programs provide local residents, businesses, and government agencies with clean, affordable alternatives to traditional, for-profit utility service. These locally governed programs allow communities to manage and direct their energy investments toward their communities’ priorities—resulting in expanding investments in renewable energy, local jobs, and workforce development, along with energy efficiency, decarbonization of transportation and buildings, and other priorities.
Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) is a model that allows communities to purchase power to meet their electricity needs, offering an alternative choice in the market. CCAs can provide the communities they serve with competitively priced, clean energy choices while reinvesting revenues into projects and programs that support the local economy.
How does Community Choice Aggregation work?
CCAs are established by local communities, either through the creation of a joint powers authority or enterprise fund. While CCAs are locally operated, they work in partnership with the region’s existing investor owned utility (IOU). Through this partnership, CCAs determine the source and procure the electricity while the existing IOUs continue delivering the energy, maintaining the grid, and providing billing services.
Empowering Our Communities
CCAs put local communities in the driver’s seat by giving them the tools they need to reduce their carbon footprint in a way that’s attainable for all customers. CCAs offer a reliable, renewable energy supply that meets the energy needs of consumers without driving up energy bills.
Because CCAs are locally managed, not-for-profit entities, any excess revenue is reinvested into the community through on-bill savings and innovative energy programs, often focusing on historically underserved and disadvantaged communities, including rebates, no-cost and low-cost energy programs, job training and employment programs and more.