Oversight and Technology Adoption
The California Investor-owned Utilities (IOUs), under authorization from the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), administer energy efficiency and demand response programs, including the Emerging Technologies Program (ETP) and the Emerging Markets and Technology Program that support advancement of new and underutilized emerging technologies (ET) into the market.
The Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) and Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) administer programs with similar objectives under the authority of their respective boards of directors.
The California Energy Commission (CEC) administers utility ratepayer-funded advanced energy technology research programs including PIER and EPIC.
The IOUs, SMUD, LADWP and the CEC participate in the Emerging Technologies Coordinating Council (ETCC) to ensure benefits to utility ratepayers and other stakeholders*. Collectively, the ETCC supports the technology advancement continuum from research and development to assessment of technology performance and acceptance in the marketplace with the eventual goal of adopting new products as part of the codified baseline.
FROM EMERGING TECHNOLOGIES TO CODES AND STANDARDS
The ETP process includes screening potential technologies, assessing them to validate performance and customer acceptance, and performing in-situ demonstrations. The technologies that offer large energy savings and rapid market penetration are then recommended for utility programs such as training and outreach, rebates, and other customer facing initiatives. (For information on the guidelines for submitting a technology for ETP review, click here).
Over time technologies proven in utility programs become standard practice and are adopted into government codes and industry standards. To facilitate code and standard development, ETP representatives participate in regional and national collaboratives.
Utility ETP also seek out and evaluate emerging “code-ready” technologies that present such rapid adoption potential that they can become baseline in a timeframe much shorter than most other technologies.
*ETCC stakeholders include, but are not limited to, project partners, the CPUC, advanced energy technology manufacturers, vendors, trade allies, consultants, NGOs, national labs, educational institutions and other advanced energy research entities and non-member utilities and regulators.