July 8, 2020
Providence is poised to be the third community in Rhode Island to conduct a public hearing on its Draft Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) Plan on Wednesday, July 15 at 5 PM via Zoom. This public hearing is required by Rhode Island law and input received shall be addressed and incorporated into the aggregation plan in advance of being submitted to the Public Utilities Commission for review. The City is working with consultant Good Energy, L.P. to design and manage its Community Choice Aggregation program.
To participate in the Public Hearing, join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone or Android device: Please click this URL to join. https://zoom.us/j/97158227099 Or join by phone: Dial: US: +1 312 626 6799 or 888 475 4499 (Toll Free) or 877 853 5257 (Toll Free) Webinar ID: 971 5822 7099 Meetings are also streamed live on our YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCiar53Ea-EHr2BPOMrC2uWA Please refresh your browser every minute or two until the meeting starts
On September 9, 2019, the City Council approved a resolution directing the Office of Sustainability to research, develop and implement an aggregation plan. The plan describes a program to create a new default electricity supply for Providence residents and businesses. Instead of simply utilizing National Grid’s electricity supply, Providence will bundle together the electricity needs of its residents and small businesses and put out a Request For Proposal for electricity suppliers to provide the necessary electricity at a competitive price. With CCA, the City is able to make strategic decisions about when to solicit bids, lock in fixed pricing for multiple years, and increase the amount of renewable energy above the existing statewide minimum.
Low-income, communities of color are disproportionally burdened by pollution from fossil fuel emissions. The Office of Sustainability has partnered with a group of community advisors that represent Providence’s diverse communities to help influence the development of the CCA program plan and bolster equitable change within the city. They have already assisted by helping to create a community survey and videos.
Key Plan Elements
- The City Council has authority over the aggregation plan including the review and approval of the plan and to make amendments to the plan on an on-going basis.
- The Office of Sustainability will oversee day-to-day administration of the program, in coordination with the City’s consultant, Good Energy.
- The program would have a default electricity supply with the goal of including extra renewable energy while also generating cost savings compared to National Grid’s supply.
- The program would have three optional electricity supplies: 1) 100% renewable energy – this maximizes environmental impact. 2) 50% renewable energy – to balance environmental impact and savings. 3) One with the State-mandated minimum renewable energy – maximizes potential savings.
- Good Energy will orchestrate a comprehensive education and outreach plan ahead of the program start date. Key messages are 1) that this is a City-sponsored program, 2) eligible accounts will be automatically enrolled, and 3) account holders may choose to opt-out of the program before it starts or anytime during at no penalty.
Public Participation Process
In partnership with Good Energy, the Office of Sustainability has conducted significant outreach across the City to inform people of this potential program and engage residents in the creation of the plan. Twelve (12) community advisors were hired from different neighborhoods to provide direct input and connect outreach efforts to their networks. To support this, four educational videos and a survey were developed, in English and Spanish, that explained the program’s goals and impact. Released on May 22, this survey was open through June 25 and led to 168 survey responses that are generally representative of the City’s demographics. A breakdown of survey results is available in Community Survey for Providence CCA_Round 2 and is summarized on pages 12-13 of the plan.
To provide comments on the plan, Providence residents and businesses have the following options:
2. Send written comments to:
Office of Sustainability
Attn: Director Bamberger
25 Dorrance St, Suite 501B
Providence, RI 02903
3. Join the Public Hearing via Zoom Wednesday, July 15th at 5 PM. This meeting will be hosted by the City’s Environmental Sustainability Task Force.