|California Solar Initiative (CSI) Newsletter - March 2008|
In This Issue
CPUC Releases Staff Draft Proposal for Low Income Multi-Family Incentive Program
Spring is here—and more sunshine highlights California’s enthusiasm for solar energy. This month’s featured photo, a 56.6-kW ground-mounted array, comes from the Deer Park Buddhist Monastery in Escondido, CA. Read on for important program updates and an opportunity to submit photos of your California Solar Initiative - funded solar installation.
On March 17, 2008, the California Solar Initiative (CSI)'s Program Administrators launched an updated CSI incentive calculator, primarily used for the Expected Performance-Based Buydown (EPBB) portion of the program. The calculator is an internet accessible tool used to determine the incentive level by calculating a project-specific "Design Factor" that adjusts the incentive level according to the project specific installation characteristics. The calculator is also used in the application process to project the incentive stream for projects in the Performance-Based Incentive (PBI) portion of the program.
On March 17, 2008, PG&E announced that it had issued reservations for all 49.9 MW in Step 4 (38.1 MW original allocation and 11.8 MW added from other Steps) for nonresidential customers, and has moved to the Step 5 incentive level. Effective immediately, nonresidential CSI applicants will be eligible for incentives of $1.55/watt ($2.30 for government/non-profit sectors) or $0.22/kWh ($0.32 for government/non-profit sectors.)
The California Solar Initiative Trigger Tracker provides an indicator of when the CSI incentive levels are expected to drop by showing the reservation and review status of all incentive classes. This snapshot compares the megawatts remaining in each step with the megawatts under review, so that users can estimate how close the incentives are to declining. When there are more megawatts under review than remaining in the step, then it may be probable that any new applications will be at the next (i.e. LOWER) incentive step level.
Southern California Edison will host the next quarterly California Solar Initiative Public Forum on April 17, 2008, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Victoria Gardens Cultural Center in Rancho Cucamonga. The quarterly public forums allow interested parties to discuss top-priority issues related to the California Solar Initiative program administration and implementation. An agenda will be posted online prior to the event.
In compliance with its procedural and statutory requirements, the CPUC recently closed the regulatory proceeding docket related to distributed generation, including the California Solar Initiative, known as Rulemaking (R.) 06-03-004. The CPUC has opened a new proceeding R.08-03-008 to handle the same set of issues. The document that opens the new proceeding – the Order Instituting Rulemaking (OIR) – describes the Commission's intent to use the new proceeding to continue the work from R.06-03-004 related to policies, rules and implementation of the California Solar Initiative, the Self-Generation Incentive Program, and general issues relating to distributed generation.
On February 29, 2008, the CPUC issued a Ruling calling for comments on an Energy Division Staff Proposal for a Low Income Multi-family CSI Incentive Program as part of the California Solar Initiative. The program targets owners of multi-family affordable housing complexes, defined under State and Federal guidelines, to promote equitable and cost effective solar energy use. The Commission has already approved a related program design for the Single-family Low Income program in November, 2007. The Energy Division facilitated a workshop on March 17 to discuss its proposal and solicit comments, which are due by March 26, 2008.
On March 5, the California Center for Sustainable Energy hosted the SANDEE Awards. More than 250 people attended the event held at the San Diego Wine and Culinary Center.
The SANDEE Awards recognize outstanding projects and activities that achieved significant energy savings through the implementation of energy efficiency, energy conservation, renewable energy or transportation measures in San Diego County.
Among many other award categories and winners, the Special Achievement in Energy by a Medium to Large Business recipient was Hunter Industries, whose building incorporates two rooftop PV systems: a CSI-funded 80-kW system owned by Hunter that provides 100% of the lighting needs for the building, and a 102-kW system owned by SDG&E that provides locally generated renewable energy for the grid.
Each month, the newsletter will feature a photo of a CSI-funded solar installation. This month’s featured installation comes from The Deer Park Buddhist Monastery in Escondido, CA. This 56.6-kW system was installed by Solar Power Inc. and will receive a CSI incentive of approximately $158,000. The Monastery recently invited community members—including CCSE staff—to participate in a ceremonial launch of the system.
The CSI newsletter seeks photos of solar systems installed under the CSI program. The program may use the photos in the next newsletter or other CSI-related publicity, such as brochures, presentations, or other marketing materials. When submitting solar PV system photos, please provide the following: name of photographer; name of installer; name of seller or system owner; system size and location; and full permission to use photo in CSI-related publicity.
Mark Your Calendar
CCSE Installer Training: CSI Program Changes Workshop
Southern California Edison Installer Training
Solar Power 2008
October 13-16, 2008
San Diego, CA
>> Solar Power 2008