Mayor Promises Decision Soon on Community Choice Energy

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Mayor Kevin Faulconer speaks at the Community Choice Energy Forum. Photo by Chris Jennewein

Mayor Kevin Faulconer said Friday he is fully behind San Diego’s goal of 100 percent renewable energy and expects to make a decision soon on community choice power.

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Under community choice aggregation, which 140 California cities have adopted, San Diego would contract with outside suppliers for clean energy to be delivered over San Diego Gas & Electric‘s transmission network.

Speaking at the opening of the Community Choice Energy Forum at UC San Diego, Faulconer told clean energy advocates that the city’s 2035 goal of 100 percent clean energy is “well within our reach.” He said he sees clean energy as a non-partisan issue.

“We want to have a plan that, A, is going to work and, B, that San Diegans can support,” he told reporters after the event, adding that his decision would come this fall.

He said other large cities nationwide are looking to San Diego to provide leadership on the issue.

Nicole Capretz, founder and executive director of the San Diego-based Climate Action Campaign, called community choice an “elegant win” for both utilities and customers and the only way to reach 100 percent clean energy.

“Community choice is the only pathway to get there by 2035,” she said “This is an extraordinary opportunity that we can’t pass up.”

SDG&E currently generates 45 percent of its energy from non-polluting sources, but community choice advocates want to reach 100 percent as soon as possible. Capretz said SDG&E should welcome community choice because the utility does not make money on electricity generation.

“We would like our own mayor to bring this forward,” she said.

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