Marin Clean Energy Program Background and Resources
Marin Clean Energy (MCE), a local "Community Choice" initiative that operates MCE, provides clean energy (electricity) to its users. The intent of the program is to provide consumers with a choice regarding their electricity service. Prior to MCE, electricity service was provided solely by Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E). MCE is a joint powers authority among Marin jurisdictions (cities and the County) and was formed in May 2009. For more information on MCE, please visit www.mcecleanenergy.org
Novato's Road to MEA Membership
The Novato City Council initially voted not to join MCE. This action was taken on February 10, 2009. Video of Council's discussion and decision.
On July 11, 2011, the MCE Board issued a letter to all non-member cities, including Novato, which outlined a four-month amnesty period during which the City could join MCE. At the conclusion of this amnesty period, any City who wished to join would be assessed a fee between $20,000-$40,000. Board's Letter
Following the Board's action, the Novato City Council requested staff to schedule an agenda item to reconsider the City's participation in MCE. In order to help assess the merits of joining MCE, the Council authorized the City Manager to spend $10,000 to obtain an independent assessment of the risks of joining MCE. Video of Council's discussion and decision
Staff subsequently entered into a contract with MRW & Associates to conduct the assessment requested by Council. MRW had previously conducted similar work for other Marin cities.
MRW completed their work and made a presentation to the Council on September 27, 2011. Staff Report including MRW's report
The City Council voted to join MCE at this meeting. Video of Council's discussion and decision. Starting in the mid-2012, Novato residents were offered the option to obtain their electricity from PG&E or MCE.
In April 2012, MCE sent three opt-out notices to Novato households followed by three additional notices in July and August. If residents did not opt-out, they were automatically enrolled in MCE.
Community Choice Aggregation programs such as MCE allow cities and counties to offer their citizens and businesses a choice when purchasing electricity other than the current utility (PG&E). MCE also supports local Green jobs and new local renewable energy generation with projects such as: 972 kWh of solar at the San Rafael Airport, 1 MW of solar at a Carport Shade in Novato, and 500 kW of solar at the Novato Cooley Quarry.
As Novato has joined MCE, our residents have 4 energy service choices: