Powering Strong Communities

Silicon Valley Clean Energy funds programs aimed at deep decarbonization

California community choice aggregator (CCA) Silicon Valley Clean Energy (SVCE) has selected four proposals to fund from a spring 2020 application round of an SVCE grant program that seeks to address key technical, market and policy barriers to achieving deep decarbonization.

The application round targeted innovative solutions for community-wide energy resiliency, SVCE said on Jan. 29.

“Public safety power shutoffs, heat waves, and rolling blackouts have put energy resilience at the forefront and highlighted the critical need for enhanced solutions to ensure a smooth transition to a carbon-free grid,” it said.

SVCE selected the program proposals to fund from the spring 2020 application round of Innovation Onramp.

The Innovation Onramp program was launched to leverage SVCE’s “unique position to engage and support the innovation ecosystem in addressing key technical, market and policy barriers to achieving deep decarbonization in our service territory and beyond,” the CCA says on its website.

SVCE provided additional details on the four pilot projects that were selected to further resiliency for SVCE communities.

Under one pilot Span.IO will install its smart electrical panels in homes across the SVCE service territory, addressing several key barriers to the all-electric transition and community resilience.

Under a second pilot, Extensible Energy and Community Energy Labs will demonstrate that load management technology can reduce electricity costs and enable schools to cost-effectively install battery back-up and serve as community resilience centers.

Under a third pilot, Outthink will provide e-bikes to four income-qualified residents and implement low-cost streetscape modifications to demonstrate the benefits and challenges of mode shifting and active transportation.

And under the fourth pilot, Electron will develop a prototype of a SVCE-owned local marketplace for load flexibility from distributed energy resources such as battery storage and smart thermostats, to unlock the value that they can provide to customers and the broader SVCE community, the CCA said.

SVCE noted that applications are now open for spring 2021 Innovation onramp funding. For this round, SVCE has dedicated $100,000 to provide seed funding to third parties with building decarbonization solutions. 

The ideas funded through this round will complement the efforts described in the Building Decarbonization Joint Action Plan, which was recently adopted by the SVCE Board of Directors.

The American Public Power Association has initiated a new category of membership for community choice aggregation programs.