The California Public Utilities Commission invests over $1 billion in energy efficiency programs each year. These investments are subsidized by ratepayers through charges collected on utility bills, with the funds used to expand efforts to reduce energy use and increase energy efficiency in homes, businesses, industrial and agricultural facilities.
Greenlining strongly supports energy efficiency efforts. Investments in this sector will lower energy costs for families and small businesses, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, grow the clean energy economy, and create jobs. We are working with the CPUC and utility companies to:
- Ensure that energy efficiency programs meet the CPUC’s goal of enabling individuals from low-income communities and communities of color to “successfully advance themselves into rewarding careers in the energy services fields.” This means not only connecting people to jobs, but connecting them to good jobs that pay a family-supporting wage and lead to opportunities for career advancement.
- Support the Energy Savings Assistance Program, which provides no-cost weatherization services to low-income households. This includes strengthening the program’s job quality and connecting underserved communities to these jobs.
- Promote use of on-bill repayment and on-bill financing plans, which would allow homeowners or small businesses to borrow money at reasonable rates to make energy efficiency upgrades and then repay the loan over time through their utility bills. Many individuals and small businesses cannot afford to pay the large upfront costs of installing energy upgrades . This financing option allows homeowners and businesses to reduce energy use, save on energy costs, and pay costs of financing through monthly payments.
- Support energy efficiency investments in low-income areas, including investments available to low-to-moderate income families, small businesses, and multi-unit residential buildings.
- Ensure accountability and transparency by requiring reporting on workforce data and program results.
- Create more contracting opportunities for businesses owned by women, minorities, and veterans.
- Ensure that employment policies for energy efficiency workers are fair and do not discriminatorily close doors to qualified, responsible workers who are re-entering the workforce.