MCE has worked to address the specific challenges that confront historically marginalized communities within our service area in a variety of ways, such as:
- sponsoring workforce development training,
- supporting local hire requirements for local renewable energy projects,
- reducing our generation rates to save customers money,
- advocating for low-income customers to be excluded from the PCIA “exit fee,”
- offering low-income solar rebates and thereby expanding access to MCE’s Net Energy Metering (NEM) cash-out, and
- providing energy efficiency installations in affordable housing units.
Low-income communities are key participants in building the future energy economy, and we believe our inclusive policies and programs can serve as a model for other Community Choice programs eager to accelerate a just transition to a sustainable energy economy.
The Community Power Coalition represents organizations from all corners of MCE’s service area. By having a unified platform for all these voices and perspectives, MCE hopes to create a space where a cross-pollination of ideas and collaboration serve to diversify and strengthen membership benefits. Not only does this promote a multi-cultural, interdisciplinary understanding of our communities, but it also allows MCE to inform a broad base about involvement opportunities in California’s Community Choice movement.
By facilitating low-risk access to renewable energy and complimenting those efforts with multi-lingual educational materials and community engagement, Community Choice Aggregation is helping to change the narrative from one that promotes clean energy for the affluent to one that is inclusive of all communities, including those that have been historically marginalized and underrepresented. Everyone, regardless of income, can now make a personal and political decision about their energy supply without facing the financial barriers of installing their own system.
If access is considered the first step toward engagement, and engagement is the first step toward empowerment, then it’s easy to understand how Community Choice is a natural tool for environmental justice. The partnerships with community and grassroots policy advocacy organizations through the Community Power Coalition help MCE to advance sustainable development and statewide policy goals by leveraging the CCA energy model as a tool for environmental justice.
Want to learn more about what MCE can offer your communities? Check out the following: