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January 2015

Letter from the Chair

Last month, we paused from our busy pace to commemorate our 40th Anniversary, look back on our achievements and thank our colleagues, friends and supporters who have helped make California a global leader in climate and energy policies and programs.

Commissioner Scott with Air Force Officer

Air Force tests largest fleet of electric vehicles connected to the grid

First all plug-in fleet for U.S. Department of Defense

The U.S. Air Force has replaced its non-tactical fleet of vehicles at the Los Angeles Air Force Base with 42 plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) . . .

image of an empty classroom full of desk, looking from the back forward towards the chalkboard.

Credit: iStock by Getty Images

California approves $20 million in loans to schools for energy efficient upgrades

Money going two community colleges and 22 schools in the Bay Area, Central Valley, San Joaquin County and Orange County

Four school districts and two community college districts received loans through the Energy Conservation Assistance Act (ECAA), a zero- or low-interest loan program providing funds to public entities . . .

Image of California Energy Commission Commissioners, staff, and Governor Jerry Brown

Credit: Energy Commission

California Energy Commission commemorates people, progress and accomplishments during 40th Anniversary events

The Energy Commission commemorated its 40th Anniversary in January. The commemoration began with the unveiling of the Energy Commission's new seal . . .

Stock photo of workers within the building and behind blue tinted glass

Credit: iStock by Getty Images

Creating more efficient buildings

Proposals for the 2016 Building Energy Standards

The Energy Commission sets state building codes for energy efficiency in residential and nonresidential buildings (Title 24). We are now evaluating proposals for the 2016 Building Energy Standards . . .

Image of a desert creek with sagebrush on the right side, clouds above, and sunset to the left

DRECP update: public comment period extended until Feb. 23

In response to requests, the public comment period for the draft Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) has been extended to Feb. 23. The comment period was originally scheduled to end Jan. 9 . . .

Image of a large completed KB home.

Making strides toward zero-net energy buildings

California has a bold energy efficiency strategy

California has a bold energy efficiency goal that calls for all new homes to be zero-net energy (ZNE) by 2020 and commercial facilities to be zero-net energy by 2030 . . .

Image of a hydrogen fueling handle being inserted into a vehicle

First commercial hydrogen fueling station opens in Sacramento area

First of many hydrogen fueling stations to be funded by the Energy Commission

The first commercial hydrogen fueling station opened in West Sacramento in December, giving local drivers a needed and convenient place to refuel hydrogen vehicles . . .

Abstract of loose coiled wires above the coil.

California launches research and development program for new energy solutions

Energy Commission closed out 2014 by advancing an effort to transform our future energy market

The Energy Commission closed out 2014 by advancing an effort to transform our future energy market. The first Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) research and development projects were approved at the commission's December business meeting. More funding opportunities will be available this year . . .

Close up image of the front control panel of a clothes washer

Did you know?

In the last 40 years, the Energy Commission has adopted the world's most advanced energy efficiency standards - many of which have been adopted around the country and by other countries.



  • Computer Energy Efficiency Studies - The Energy Commission released two studies on computer power management. The studies found that computers are not going into sleep mode or automatically being turned off as often as users think, presenting opportunities to save energy without sacrificing performance. The implications of the research are that workplace desktop computers consume significant amounts of energy even when not in use.
  • Published the Natural Gas Research and Development 2014 Annual Report.


  • Acceptance Test Technician Certification Providers - The California Advanced Lighting Controls Training Program and the National Lighting Contractors Association of America were approved to become Acceptance Test Technician Certification Providers. They will train and certify field technicians and employers on the Building Energy Efficiency Standards lighting control acceptance tests.
  • AB 758 - Enforcement and Compliance - Approved regulations creating an administrative process to enforce compliance with California's energy and water efficiency standards for appliances. Once approved by the Office of Administrative Law, the Energy Commission can impose monetary penalties for violations of the Appliance Efficiency Regulations. The new enforcement process is the result of former Senator Fran Pavley's (D-Agoura Hills) 2011 bill, SB 454, which gave the commission this additional authority. Without adequate enforcement of the regulations, energy and water savings totaling billions of dollars may not be realized.


  • Prop 39 - Implementation Guidelines updated - Approved substantive changes to the Proposition 39: California Clean Energy Jobs Act 2015 Program Implementation Guidelines. The guidelines provide direction to potential applicants on their participation in the program. The process took several months and included stakeholder participation and input.
  • The Energy Commission approved its first $10 million to fund Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) research and development projects during the December business meeting.
  • Abengoa Mojave Solar Power Project - The 250-megawatt Abengoa Mojave Solar Power Project, about 20 miles west of Barstow, became fully operational Dec. 4. The project, which uses parabolic trough solar thermal technology, was licensed by the Energy Commission in August 2010. During construction, the peak number of workers for the project was estimated at 1,162. The plant employs approximately 65 permanent full-time workers.
  • Funded by the Energy Commission's Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program, a hydrogen refueling station opened in West Sacramento. Our goal is to build an initial network of 48 stations by the end of 2015 and to ultimately have 100 stations in place.
View more events on our calendar
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