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News

Grand opening invitation for RCEA's Redwood Coast Airport Microgrid

Visit RCEA’s microgrid page for Grand Opening Celebration details and request a site TOUR: RedwoodEnergy.org/rcam/

RCEA's photo of the microgrid with the batteries and airport in the backgroun

Collaborating for a Clean Energy Future: California’s First 100% Renewable Multi-Customer Microgrid is Now Operational

Redwood Coast Airport’s new solar microgrid serves as a blueprint for energy resilience

Tuesday, June 7 2022

ARCATA, Calif.— California’s first 100% renewable energy, front-of-the-meter, multi-customer microgrid is now fully operational. Located in Humboldt County, California, the microgrid provides energy resilience for the regional airport and US Coast Guard Air Station.

This microgrid was developed through a first-of-its-kind partnership between the Schatz Energy Research Center at Cal Poly Humboldt, the Redwood Coast Energy Authority, Pacific Gas & Electric, the County of Humboldt, TRC, The Energy Authority, Tesla, Inc., and Schweitzer Engineering Labs.

Research and development was supported through a $5 million grant from California’s Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) – a statewide program which invests in scientific and technological research to accelerate the transformation of the electricity sector to meet the state’s energy and climate goals – and by $6 million from the Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA), a joint powers agency that provides clean and renewable power to Humboldt County.

A model for resilient, clean energy

“The Redwood Coast Airport Microgrid has ushered in a new and exciting era for the electric grid in California,” says Peter Lehman, Founding Director of the Schatz Center and project lead. “With its successful deployment and the development of new microgrid agreements and tariffs, RCAM has become a role model and beacon to communities across the state who are striving to green their energy supply and bolster their resilience in the face of climate change.”

The Redwood Coast Airport Microgrid (RCAM) features a 2.2-megawatt solar photovoltaic array that is DC-coupled to a 2 megawatt (9 megawatt-hour) battery energy storage system, comprised of three Tesla Megapacks.

During standard blue-sky operations, RCAM generates clean and renewable energy for the North Coast, and participates in the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) wholesale energy markets, including the day-ahead, realtime, and ancillary services markets. By storing solar energy during the day and releasing it onto the grid as needed in the evening and during heavy demand periods, RCAM enables greater utilization of solar, supports grid reliability, and creates an economic model for future microgrids.

When a power outage occurs, the microgrid islands from the main grid and energizes the circuit that encompasses the airport, the adjacent Coast Guard Air Station, and several neighboring facilities. RCAM will provide seamless, ongoing electricity for all customers in the microgrid circuit during any local outages.

As the first microgrid in the CAISO market and the first renewable, front-of-the-meter microgrid system in the state, RCAM is building a replicable business model for renewable microgrid deployment.

Meeting critical resilience goals

The regional California Redwood Coast-Humboldt County Airport (ACV) is located in McKinleyville, California, and serves the greater North Coast community with over 50,000 flights per year, including commercial airline, private, and emergency medical flights. Adjacent to the airport, the US Coast Guard Air Station Humboldt Bay provides search and rescue for 250 miles of rural coastline, from the Mendocino-Sonoma county line to the California-Oregon border.

Roads into Humboldt County are frequently closed by fires and mudslides, making air services a critical factor in regional emergency response.

Cody Roggatz, Humboldt County’s Director of Aviation says that “The California Redwood Coast-Humboldt County Airport (ACV) is a lifeline to our community every day by keeping Humboldt County connected to the world alongside our partners at United Airlines, Avelo Airlines, American Airlines, REACH/Cal-Ore Life Flights, US Coast Guard-Sector Humboldt Bay, and many others. RCAM ensures that we can continue to keep that lifeline open through energy resilience, no matter what happens to the power grid.”

Community microgrids: partnering for resilience

Deploying multi-customer, front-of-the-meter community microgrids requires close coordination between the microgrid design team, the electric utility, and an electricity generation partner who can energize the microgrid when needed. Because these microgrids utilize circuitry that is owned and maintained by the utility, their control systems must be responsive to utility commands and safety needs, while maintaining a clear delineation between utility-owned and generation partner-owned equipment. Furthermore, participating in the wholesale market requires that the system also be responsive to market signals.

  • Design and development of the RCAM project was led by Schatz Energy Research Center at Cal Poly Humboldt. The Schatz Center’s microgrid research and development focuses on resilient renewable energy solutions for the California North Coast and beyond.
  • The Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA) is the Community Choice Aggregator for Humboldt County, serving 63,000 electric account customers and supporting energy efficiency alongside local, clean and renewable energy solutions. RCEA is responsible for the majority of the Humboldt Bay area’s energy resource procurement, and owns and operates the electricity generation equipment for the microgrid.
  • PG&E maintains the regional electricity grid, which serves over 16 million people in Northern and Central California, and owns and operates the microgrid circuit.

“An important success of RCAM was how we were able to work through the complex financial, technical, regulatory, business, and operational hurdles facing this project,” says Dana Boudreau, RCEA’s director of Operations and Infrastructure. “This experience will serve us well as we continue to engage our community in building offshore wind energy, supporting more solar and storage capacity, and developing new community microgrids.”

Part of a growing trend

The unique collaboration between RCAM project partners has resulted in both technical and policy innovations. RCAM is the model for PG&E’s Community Microgrid Enablement Program – which provides technical assistance and cost offsets for community microgrid deployment. Additionally, PG&E’s Microgrid Incentive Program, expected to launch later this year, will leverage a $200 million statewide fund dedicated to deploying clean energy microgrids, to support the critical needs of vulnerable populations and disadvantaged communities.

“The Redwood Coast Airport Microgrid represents the culmination of many years of research, innovation, and collaboration by the world’s leading microgrid experts. Thanks to their hard work, microgrids now play a key role in PG&E’s ongoing efforts to harden our electrical system and enhance local grid resilience throughout Northern and Central California,” says Jason Glickman, Executive Vice President, Engineering, Planning and Strategy, PG&E. “We know how much our customers and communities need reliable energy, and this system not only increases local reliability, but it serves as the foundation for a replicable and scalable model for widely deploying multi-customer microgrids across PG&E’s service area, giving communities a new tool to take a more active role in securing their resilience and clean energy goals.”

Next steps for the North Coast

“RCEA’s goal is to provide our customers with 100% carbon-free electricity by 2025, and 100% local carbon-free electricity by 2030. This project is a major milestone for our clean energy and resilience efforts,” says Matthew Marshall, Executive Director of RCEA. RCEA works closely with schools, fire departments, Native American Tribes, and other local agencies to support community resilience across the North Coast.

Renewable energy microgrids are uniquely suited to help rural Tribes and other communities adapt to climate change and simultaneously mitigate future climate impacts. The Schatz Center is partnering with a number of Tribes in Northern California to support their clean energy, resilience, and climate response efforts.

Cal Poly Humboldt also recently began design of a renewable energy microgrid to support campus resilience through clean generation. This microgrid will be part of the university’s sustainability framework, and will enable students in engineering, environmental sciences, and other programs to gain hands-on experience with innovative climate-friendly technologies.

More information

Visit RCEA’s microgrid page and request a site TOUR: RedwoodEnergy.org/rcam/

News

Who's knockin gon my door scam alert graphic

SCAM ALERT from the Redwood Coast Energy Authority

Monday, May 23, 2022

The Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA) and local law enforcement are receiving reports that individuals claiming to represent RCEA and/or Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) are going through neighborhoods asking to come into homes to discuss energy contracts and potential bill savings. Please be aware that this is not RCEA; RCEA does not go door-to-door to discuss bills or services. Included in the reports are promises of less expensive natural gas contracts, which RCEA does not handle. RCEA only sells electricity.

RCEA encourages the community to approach these solicitations with caution, read through all the details, don’t share your personal information or sign anything until you are confident that it will benefit you and that it is a legitimate offer.  Some customers who have signed up with similar non-local gas solicitors in the past have reported that they were locked into long-term contracts and that the cost was significantly higher than what they were previously paying with PG&E.

Additional scams reported this year include callers asking for bill payment over the phone. Remember to only pay your current and past due bills via your usual secure payment options. If someone calls for your credit card information to keep your account active, hang up and call PG&E’s customer service if you have questions.

To discuss your bill in detail, call RCEA at (707) 269-1700 or PG&E at (800) 743-5000. RCEA’s website has information about all of RCEA’s trusted services, including rebates, financial assistance, energy efficiency, electric vehicle incentives, local renewable energy projects, events, and notifications about current scams. www. RedwoodEnergy.org.

News

Graphic explaining how Community Choice Energy works

Community Choice Energy Celebrates Five Years in Humboldt County

The Redwood Coast Energy Authority’s Community Choice Energy Program is celebrating its five-year anniversary this May. We have been meeting the electricity demands of about 63,000 Humboldt County customers to the tune of roughly 700,000 MWh per year since 2017, and providing that power at discounted prices.

“Five years ago, RCEA switched on the Community Choice Energy program on behalf of Humboldt County residents and business owners,” said RCEA Board Chair Stephen Avis. “As a joint powers public agency, City and County elected officials voted to participate in a program designed to retain control of our energy dollars by reinvesting them in local and sustainable energy projects instead of sending them to out of area shareholders. The decision-making process of our RCEA board of directors has helped us replace fossil fuel with renewable and sustainable sources of energy. This shift has put our county on the leading edge of combating the causes of climate change, and I am very proud to be a part of that.”

RCEA’s CCE program aims to provide local energy customers with a mix of 100% renewable and carbon-free electricity by 2025, and 100% local renewable power by 2030. “RCEA is pursuing and signing contracts for local renewable energy and utility-scale energy storage to make good on the ambitious clean energy goals advocated by our community and adopted by our Board,” said RCEA’s Power Resources Director Richard Engel.

Solar panels at the Redwood Coast Airport Microgrid

“The Redwood Coast Airport Microgrid in McKinleyville is an example of RCEA building local resilience and clean energy resources for our Community Choice Energy portfolio. It’s built, operational and feeding renewable power to the grid now,” said RCEA Board member and former Chair Sheri Woo. “Join us for the ribbon-cutting ceremony at the airport.” Details for the Wednesday, June 22 celebration will be forthcoming. RCEA, the Schatz Energy Research Center at Cal Poly Humboldt, PG&E, and the County of Humboldt, constructed this first-of-its-kind, multi-customer microgrid during the pandemic. The 2.3 MW solar array and battery energy storage system was funded by RCEA and the California Energy Commission and provides electricity for RCEA’s customers during normal operations. During power outages, the electricity will support the Coast Guard, air transport activities, and regional emergency responses.

RCEA is also working to make offshore wind part of its Community Choice Energy local power mix. “In 2016 when our CCE program was being designed, local offshore wind energy was a distant concept,” said RCEA Executive Director Matthew Marshall. “This fall, the federal government will auction off leases to developers who wish to explore the feasibility of wind energy projects 20 or so miles off Humboldt Bay, which could be operational by 2030. Offshore wind will be a critical tool in combating climate change while creating skilled jobs and driving economic development up and down the California coast. RCEA will continue to work with our community, the local fishing industry, Tribes, local labor organizations, and other stakeholders to maximize offshore wind’s benefits for our community.”

image showing how the port for offshore wind services might look on the Samoa Peninsula

Revenues from the CCE’s power sales are directed back into the community in the form of RCEA’s customer programs. “In addition to cleaner, more affordable energy, Community Choice Energy in Humboldt County allows us greater flexibility to provide energy efficiency services to residents, businesses, and public agencies by keeping energy dollars local,” said Stephen Kullmann, who leads RCEA’s Customer Energy Solutions. “We recently launched a new series of rebates, this time for a wide variety of equipment like washers, dryers, heat pumps, and other efficient appliances. We’ll continue with our assessment and installation services–with even more energy-saving programs planned.”

Visit our Rebates page for details on all our rebates and incentives, including EVS and EV charging equipment.

THANK YOU to all our customers and partners for joining us and exercising your power to choose.

News

Stock energy storage photo

RCEA Joins California Community Power Members for a 2nd Long Duration Energy Storage Procurement Project

The Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA) has again teamed up with six of our Community Choice Aggregator members on another lithium-ion energy storage project. ‘Goal Line’ will be a 50MW/400MWh project with eight hours of discharge duration. It’ll be developed by Onward Energy in Escondido, California, with an expected online date of 2025.

Energy storage continues to play a key role in maximizing the benefits of renewable energy that is so abundant during the day but drops off in the evening.

See our joint press release below for further details.

Read press release

California Community Power Members Approve Second Lithium-Ion Long-Duration Energy Storage Contract
Six CCAs sign on to new California lithium-ion storage project

March 7, 2022

Monterey, Calif. – At a special meeting of the California Community Power (CC Power) board on February 25, members of the Joint Powers Agency voted to enter into a contract for the 50-megawatt (MW)/400-megawatt hour (MWh) Goal Line long-duration energy storage project. The lithium-ion battery storage project, developed by Onward Energy, will have eight hours of discharge duration and will be located in Escondido, California, with an expected online date of 2025.

“The collaboration of California Community Power members has been a tremendous success as we enter into our second long-duration storage agreement,” said Geof Syphers, CC Power Board Chair and Sonoma Clean Power CEO. “This new contract allows the participating members to meet our state-mandated long-duration storage requirements, showing how CCAs are leading the way to advance clean energy in California.”

“Combined with the approval of the Tumbleweed project in January 2022 – the first CC Power long-duration storage contract, the Goal Line contract demonstrates the commitment of member CCAs to confront the reliability needs of the power grid to hit California’s greenhouse gas reduction targets by 2030,” said Tim Haines, CC Power Interim General Manager.

“Onward is honored that California Community Power has entrusted us with this important project,” said Steve Doyon, CEO of Onward Energy. “Long-duration storage is an important part of the energy transition, and we are proud that the Goal Line battery storage facility will provide clean, reliable power to CC Power members for years to come.”

Participating CCAs

The Goal Line project adheres to the long-duration storage enhanced conditions adopted by the CC Power Board. It will be constructed under a Project Labor Agreement, assuring prevailing wages and use of apprenticeship programs.

This joint procurement effort for long-duration energy storage is a continuation of the Oct. 2020 Request for Offers (RFO) seeking to procure cost-effective and viable long-duration storage resources. A subset of CC Power member CCAs issued the RFO before the California Public Utilities Commission Mid-Term Reliability procurement order (Decision 21-06-035). The Goal Line and Tumbleweed contracts will allow the participating CCAs to meet their obligation for the long-duration energy storage requirement mandated by the CPUC.

Participation in the RFO and resulting projects is voluntary for each CC Power member. The participating agencies for the Goal Line project are CleanPowerSF, Redwood Coast Energy Authority, San Jose Clean Energy, Silicon Valley Clean Energy, Sonoma Clean Power Authority, and Valley Clean Energy. The governing boards of each participating member will follow their local review and approval processes for the contract and associated agreements for the Goal Line project.

The ongoing RFO process and member participation are discussed during noticed public meetings of the CC Power board. Additional projects identified during the competitive solicitation process will be reviewed at upcoming meetings. Meeting information is available at cacommunitypower.org/meetings.

About California Community Power

California Community Power is a Joint Powers Agency comprised of ten California Community Choice Aggregators (CCAs). The agency allows its member CCAs to combine their buying power to procure new, cost-effective clean energy and reliability resources to continue advancing local and state climate goals. California Community Power members represent over 3 million customers across more than 145 municipalities spanning from Humboldt County to Santa Barbara County. Learn more at cacommunitypower.org.

About Onward Energy
Onward Energy is an independent power generator that owns and operates a 4GW portfolio of solar, wind, and gas generation projects in the U.S. With 43 projects in 16 states, Onward Energy is a national leader in the clean energy transition, investing in the next generation of reliable, clean technologies that will enable our customers and communities to meet their decarbonization goals faster. More information can be found at www.OnwardEnergy.com.

Media Contact
Pamela Leonard
Communications Manager
Silicon Valley Clean Energy
pamela.leonard@svcleanenergy.org
O: 408-721-5301 x1004

Here are a few links to coverage of the story:

News

Battery energy storage system in nature

RCEA Joins Six California Community Power Members in a Contract for 69 Megawatts of Long Duration Energy Storage

The Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA) has teamed up with six other Community Choice Aggregators on a new energy storage project that not only helps fulfill compliance requirements but more importantly supports the transition to a carbon-free energy future. Low-carbon renewable energy supplies tend to be more intermittent on the grid, so RCEA and others load-serving entities will continue to invest in long-term storage to reliably deliver clean, affordable electricity to our customers.

RCEA’s share of the project will be 2.5 MW, or 3.6% of the total of the project’s capacity, which satisfies about one-third of RCEA’s total “long lead time” compliance requirements. RCEA’s Board of Directors is expected to finalize the contract at its February meeting.

See our joint press release below for further details.

Read press release

Seven California Community Power Members Contract for 69 Megawatts of Long Duration Energy Storage

Project marks first major procurement milestone for CCA Joint Powers Agency

Monterey, Calif.

At the January 19 California Community Power (CC Power) board meeting, members of the Joint Powers Agency voted to enter into an energy storage service agreement with REV Renewables for 69 megawatts (MW)/552 megawatt hours (MWh) of long-duration energy storage. The REV Renewables Tumbleweed project will be a CAISO grid-connected, lithium-ion battery storage resource located near Rosamond, in Kern County, California, with an expected online date of 2026.

“Long-duration energy storage is a vital resource, needed to amplify the value of renewable power, and accelerate California’s shift to a clean, reliable and affordable grid,” said Girish Balachandran, California Community Power Board Chair and Silicon Valley Clean Energy CEO. “This first project is an exciting milestone that shows how CCAs work together to advance our shared goals in the transition to a carbon-free grid.”

The California Public Utilities Commission Mid-Term Reliability Procurement order (Decision 21-06-035) requires all CPUC-jurisdictional load serving entities, including CC Power Members, to procure from energy storage facilities capable of discharging for a minimum of 8 hours. This project satisfies approximately 55% of the long-duration storage compliance requirements of the participating members.

This joint procurement effort for long-duration energy storage began before the CPUC issued the new procurement order when a subset of the CC Power members issued a Request for Offers (RFO) in Oct. 2020 seeking to procure cost effective and viable long-duration storage resources.

Participating CCAs

Participation in the RFO and resulting projects is voluntary for each CC Power member. The participating agencies for this project are CleanPowerSF, Peninsula Clean Energy, Redwood Coast Energy Authority, San Jose Clean Energy, Silicon Valley Clean Energy, Sonoma Clean Power Authority and Valley Clean Energy. Participating members will follow their own review and approval processes with their local, elected boards.

The Tumbleweed project adheres to the long-duration storage enhanced conditions adopted by the CC Power Board for this procurement effort. It will be constructed under a Project Labor Agreement, assuring prevailing wages and use of apprenticeship programs and is expected to create dozens of new jobs.

The ongoing RFO process, as well as member participation, have been discussed during noticed, public meetings of the CC Power board. Additional projects identified during the competitive solicitation process will be discussed at upcoming meetings. Meeting information is available at cacommunitypower.org/meetings.

 

This story was also covered here:

  • https://www.canarymedia.com/articles/long-duration-energy-storage/lithium-ion-batteries-beat-novel-long-duration-tech-in-california-contest
  • https://www.spglobal.com/marketintelligence/en/news-insights/latest-news-headlines/lithium-ion-takes-early-lead-in-calif-race-for-longer-lasting-energy-storage-68468842
  • https://pv-magazine-usa.com/2022/01/26/california-community-power-members-procure-69mw-of-long-duration-storage/
  • https://www.solarpowerworldonline.com/2022/01/7-california-ccas-sign-on-for-nearly-70-mw-long-duration-energy-storage-project/

Eight Community Choice Aggregators Partner to Form California Community Power – A Joint Powers Authority

CCAs to leverage combined buying power for large-scale clean energy procurement and provide cost-effective services and programs

Sunnyvale, Calif. – Northern and central coast Community Choice Aggregators (CCAs) are joining forces by forming a new Joint Powers Authority (JPA) – California Community Power. The JPA allows the CCAs to combine their buying power to procure new, cost-effective clean energy and reliability resources to continue advancing local and state climate goals.

The CCAs forming California Community Power represent 2.6 million customer accounts and 6.6 million people across more than 140 municipalities spanning from Humboldt County to Santa Barbara County. The CCAs serve a combined annual load of 32,600 gigawatt hours, which represents about 40% of PG&E’s annual electric load. The member CCAs include Central Coast Community Energy, East Bay Community Energy, MCE, Peninsula Clean Energy, Redwood Coast Energy Authority, San José Clean Energy, Silicon Valley Clean Energy and Sonoma Clean Power. CleanPowerSF is pursuing membership.

Additional benefits of the new JPA include enhanced negotiating power, larger renewable and storage project procurement, shared risk mitigation, and increased opportunities for innovation, as demonstrated by the first, major joint procurement for 500 megawatts (MWs) of long-duration energy storage. The long-duration Request for Offers seeks a minimum 10-year contract for grid-charged technologies to come online by or before 2026 with a discharge period of at least eight hours. The solicitation is currently in the project evaluation stage.

“California is a policy leader in the fight against climate change. CCAs have helped local communities meet their climate goals by building new renewable resources and implementing programs that reduce emissions from transportation and buildings,” said State Senator Josh Becker, D-Peninsula. “As we work to achieve the clean energy goals set by SB 100, CCAs will continue to play a crucial role to reduce emissions for communities across the state. It is encouraging to see CCAs come together to develop long duration storage, a crucial resource for achieving our 100% clean energy target.”

“As a long-serving MCE Board Director, I am excited to see the momentum for CCAs in the state,” said MCE Board Director and Mayor of Richmond, Tom Butt. “We started as a small program serving just a handful of communities and the recent creation of California Community Power truly showcases the power of what communities can do when we work together to advance our climate goals, while supporting local economies.”

“Over the years, as the CCA movement has grown, there has been an increase of CCA joint procurement efforts for large-scale renewables and energy storage projects,” said Beth Vaughan, executive director of the California Community Choice Association (CalCCA). “The creation of California Community Power represents a truly community-led approach to advancing cleaner energy, greater reliability, and reduced costs for ratepayers.”

The JPA model has been proven with municipal utilities operating under this structure for decades,” said Girish Balachandran, Silicon Valley Clean Energy CEO. “We are eager to expand and formalize our partnerships among CCAs to help our communities affordably meet their climate goals while maintaining reliability, as the state transitions to a decarbonized grid.”

CCA climate goals are typically more aggressive than the state mandate to achieve a 100% clean energy grid by 2045. Many CCAs already meet or exceed state mandates for eligible renewable resources and some have set targets to achieve 100% renewable energy by 2030, or match supply with load on a 24/7 basis with renewable or carbon-free generation. California CCAs have done this while saving their customers tens of millions of dollars annually on their utility bills, developing thousands of megawatts of new wind and solar power projects, and developing and offering innovative energy programs.

Under the JPA structure, individual members are not obligated to participate in every procurement or joint project. Each CCA will be represented by their CEO or other designee on the board of directors, which will operate as a public entity with open and transparent meetings compliant with the Brown Act. The JPA structure safeguards members from additional liabilities so there is no added risk for the members. Each CCA maintains its community-driven, local autonomy to meet the needs of their customers and region.

More information will be available on the California Community Power website (cacommunitypower.org), which is currently under development.

 

About CCAs

Community Choice Aggregators, or CCAs, provide competitively priced, clean energy choices to their communities while reinvesting revenues into local and statewide projects and programs, supporting sustainability, and enhancing their local economies. There are 23 CCAs in California serving more than 10 million customers.

 

Central Coast Community Energy – 3CEnergy.org 

East Bay Community Energy – ebce.org

MCE – mcecleanenergy.org

Peninsula Clean Energy – peninsulacleanenergy.com

Redwood Coast Energy Authority – redwoodenergy.org

San José Clean Energy – sanjosecleanenergy.org

Silicon Valley Clean Energy – svcleanenergy.org

Sonoma Clean Power – sonomacleanpower.org

 

Media Contact

Pamela Leonard, Communications Manager

pamela.leonard@svcleanenergy.org

O: 408-721-5301 x1004 | M: 530-306-0122

Resource adequacy for grid reliability

Woman hold smart phone and use smart home control app to monitoring home parameters.

Leap Extends Resource Adequacy Capacity to California Community Choice Aggregators – 

Initial agreements enable Redwood Coast Energy Authority and Valley Clean Energy to tap into the statewide market for flexible, distributed energy capacity to meet electricity demand in their service territories.

 

Leap, the provider of a universal distributed energy marketplace, announced it has signed Resource Adequacy (RA) Agreements to provide a total of 12.5 MW in flexible capacity to two Community Choice Aggregators (CCA), Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA) and Valley Clean Energy (VCE). The new capacity will be made available for use by these CCAs starting June 2021 over a ten-year term and will be sourced from Leap’s marketplace for grid flexibility.

The new agreements with Leap allow the CCAs to unlock a new means of meeting energy demand in their service territories by gaining access to a statewide market of distributed energy resources (DER). This includes delivering flexible capacity from customer facilities around the state.

Leap has been the largest participant in California’s DR Auction Mechanism (DRAM) over the past two years, and working with CCAs provides a significant expansion opportunity. Leap’s marketplace allows technology partners to deliver clean, flexible grid capacity and energy from their residential HVAC systems, battery energy storage, and commercial, industrial, and agricultural solutions. The addition of these resources allows RCEA and VCE to support California grid resiliency while sourcing capacity from their own customers, as well as zero-carbon, local, customer-based resources statewide.

Leap’s expansion to providing CCAs with RA capacity also complements California’s push to increase its incremental grid resources in the face of sustained energy demand challenges, which have been exacerbated by a summer that triggered the state’s first calls for Level 3 emergency rolling blackouts in almost 20 years.

“CCAs are an integral part of California’s transition to a cleaner and more responsive grid, and we’re proud to be working with these two organizations to unlock the value of the state’s growing suite of distributed energy resources,” said Thomas Folker, Leap’s co-founder and CEO. “This is also an important proof point for meeting California’s immediate need for more flexible capacity, especially in light of the intensifying heatwaves and energy demand that we saw here this summer.”

“We’re thrilled to be partnering with a solution provider that aligns with our vision of leveraging clean, local distributed resources to bolster grid reliability,” said Matthew Marshall of RCEA. “The new capacity added by Leap will be critical to mitigating peak demand over summers moving forward.”

“Leap’s platform is an ideal fit for ensuring a cleaner, more reliable grid for our customers,” said Don Saylor, Chair of the Board of Valley Clean Energy. “Now more than ever, it’s critical we implement solutions like Leap’s for transitioning to a cleaner, more resilient grid that utilizes all of its assets.”

Note: RCEA’s procurement share is 5.5 MW. 

Valley Clean Energy is a not-for-profit public agency formed to provide electrical generation service to customers in Woodland, Davis, Winters and the unincorporated areas of Yolo County. Its mission is to source cost-competitive clean electricity while providing product choice, price stability, energy efficiency, greenhouse gas emission reductions and reinvestment in the communities it serves.

Leap enables real-time automated trading on energy markets. Leap’s marketplace for grid flexibility grants energy resources — including battery energy storage, electric vehicles, smart thermostats, HVAC systems and industrial facilities — access to global demand response programs, wholesale markets, and real-time pricing through a single API.

Leap’s open, hardware-agnostic platform turns the operators of energy resources of any size and type into autonomous smart energy traders, providing revenue to participants while unlocking the benefits of a truly resilient and transactive grid. Leap is a privately held company with offices in San Francisco and the Netherlands.

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