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Clean Choice Energy Coming in October:

In October, local Santa Barbara residents will have access to Community Choice Energy. The inception of this program began in 2002. California ratified Assembly Bill 117, which gave local authorities the power to build renewable energy generators such as windmills and solar plants. Now, almost twenty years later, this program reaches Santa Barbara. Residents will be automatically enrolled in Santa Barbara Clean Energy, making alternative energy their default provider. Additionally, this program introduces rebates for home battery storage, clean transportation, and green building updates. 

Addressing Opposition to Community Choice Energy:

There’s no reason for alarm, either. Southern California Edison will remain the utility company and deliverer. However, consumers now how the power to choose their energy supplier. A power they most certainly deserve. Purchasers’ plans, services, and rates will not go up more than five dollars a month, on average. If anything, this investment provides an opportunity for lower and more stable electric rates in the future. There’s also a “Green Star” option that would remain the exact same price at only 50% carbon neutral. Plus, you can always opt out of this program through their website

Although this concept may sound foreign, it’s not new. Utilities including BG&E, Atlantic City Electric, and many more have opted into this trend, also known as energy deregulation. There are currently fourteen participating states across the US and counting. PG&E has already rolled out this program in many parts of California, as well, including the Central Coast, Bay Area, and Silicon Valley. By vote, the power monopoly that mega-corporations once held is coming to an end. It’s time to empower people with a choice over their future. We can no longer ignore the consequences of our actions, including global warming. 

What does the Future Look Like?

In the future, Community Choice Energy Program envisions people with energy security. A reliable energy network is crucial, especially in times of need. Authorities believe alternate energy sources can combat increasing shut-offs due to natural disasters and overload. Respectively, special attention will be placed on public buildings such as hospitals. Microgrids are another viable option they will explore, concurrently. Santa Barbara certainly has ambitious goals of reaching one hundred percent renewable by 2030. 

According to the City of Santa Barbara’s Annual Energy Reports, SCE’s energy prices have been escalating. Adversely, prices of sustainable technology are projected to continue to drop while energy usage decreases. Santa Barbara has already saved nearly a quarter-million dollars every year with green initiatives. SBCE plans to direct profits back into the community. Energy efficiency is the smartest way to a sustainable future. 

Did you enjoy this article? To continue reading, check out our post on Santa Barbara’s Natural Gas Ban.

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