San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria touts “future-focused energy choice” as he starts up San Diego Community Power service. Image via Twitter

Mayor Todd Gloria began San Diego Community Power Monday — a community choice energy service responsible for buying wholesale clean electricity on behalf of customers in San Diego, Chula Vista, Encinitas, La Mesa and Imperial Beach.

“Today we are flipping the switch on San Diego Community Power and finally bringing a future-focused energy choice and a clear path to 100% renewable energy,” Gloria said as part of a pledge to create a more sustainable San Diego.

“This launch is an essential next step in meeting our regional climate action goals. By embracing renewable energy sources, we are going to protect San Diego for generations to come.”

SDCP is a community choice aggregator intended to provide clean, renewable energy at competitive rates and investing in innovative programs to benefit the environment and the economy. SDCP will source cleaner electricity for about 770,000 customer accounts.

“As a San Diego Community Power board member, I am thrilled to be celebrating this historic launch today, as we have a clear, competitively priced path to building healthier communities powered by clean, renewable energy,” said Councilwoman Monica Montgomery Steppe. “Our city has fought for this opportunity for many years, and it is such an exciting day for all of us as we bring choice to local ratepayers, create a green legacy for all future generations, reinvest in our communities and support clean energy jobs for local workers.”

Monday marked the first day SDCP provided power to its five municipal customers. Business customers are expected to come online in June and homes are scheduled to be powered in 2022.

San Diego adopted a Climate Action Plan in 2015, setting goals to achieve 100% renewable energy citywide and zero waste. It also developed the Climate Equity Index, intended to better understand access to opportunity in San Diego’s Communities of Concern with a locally driven tool.

“Today is truly a historic event as we bring energy provider choice to the region for the first time,” said SDCP Interim CEO Bill Carnahan. “This is a huge step in protecting our environment, reducing the costly impacts of climate change and ensuring competitive pricing for sustainable energy.”

While SDCP will procure power supplies, San Diego Gas & Electric will continue to deliver power, distribute monthly billing, and provide ongoing power grid maintenance.

As service becomes available, eligible residents and businesses will be automatically enrolled in SDCP service with the choice to opt-out at any time.

SDG&E currently produces 40% of the electricity it produces from renewable sources, one of the highest levels among large utilities. It also offers 50% and 100% renewal energy options for customers.

Updated at 5:55 p.m., Monday, March 1,2021

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