This Friday, Yolo County officials as well as those from its major cities will officially launch Valley Clean Energy, a consortium of agencies who are trying to cut power rates.
It’s estimated that around 60,000 electricity customers in Woodland, Davis, and unincorporated Yolo County will have the power to choose cleaner, more cost effective electricity when the agency launches.
Valley Clean Energy is the new locally governed nonprofit electricity program that is committed to delivering cost-competitive, clean and reliable electricity.
The agency is set to deliver on this commitment with a 2.5 percent lower generation rate than PG&E while providing higher levels of renewable energy, according to Jim Parks, the energy group’s customer care director.
In total, based on current PG&E rates, the energy alliance will save its customers approximately $1.8 million in the first full year of operation. This is possible because as a not for profit entity, the agency is designed to put its revenue back into the local economy to keep its rates competitive and invest in local projects that benefit the communities served by the program.
Customers in Woodland, Davis, and unincorporated Yolo County will be automatically enrolled in the agency’s standard program. They will see their electricity generation rates reduced by 2.5 percent, stated Parks, and know that 42 percent of their electricity came from renewable sources. Customers can also choose to upgrade to the agency’s UltraGreen 100 percent renewables program for 1.5 cents/kWh more than the standard agency rate.
As a community choice program, customers can also choose to opt out at any time and remain a full customer of PG&E.
The agency is governed by elected leaders from the cities of Woodland and Davis and Yolo County. It partnered with the Sacramento Municipal Utility District to procure energy and provide customer and technical support. PG&E will continue to manage the power delivery infrastructure and customer billing.
“Local control and accountability is one of the many benefits of Valley Clean Energy,” said Davis City Councilman Lucas Frerichs, chairman of the Valley Clean Energy Board. “Our board is in tune with our communities and can be responsive to their priorities and needs.”
For financial services, Valley Clean Energy partnered with River City Bank, the largest, independent, locally owned bank in the Sacramento region. River City Bank has a track record of successfully supporting other community choice energy programs, like Monterey Bay Community Power, stated Parks.
“Lower rates and strong partnerships with respected regional partners gives Valley Clean Energy a foundation for success,” added Woodland City Councilman Tom Stallard, vice chairman of the Valley Clean Energy Board. “SMUD and River City Bank are top players in their respective fields and we’re fortunate to have their experience and expertise backing our program.”
“I’m thrilled to celebrate the launch of Valley Clean Energy,” said Yolo County Supervisor Don Saylor, a founding board member of the agency. “By partnering in this effort we can better achieve our goals of greener energy sources, cost reduction for users, and potentially offer better and predictable rates for specific groups, such as agriculture customers.”
Community members, businesses, and organizations from Woodland, Davis, and Yolo County are invited to join the celebratory launch party on Friday, from 4:30 to 6 p.m. at the Dresbach-Hunt Boyer Mansion, 604 Second St., Davis.
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