The Energy Coalition and CommunityElectricity, in collaboration with UCLA and a consortium of best-of-breed partners have been awarded a $9M+ California Energy Commission (CEC) EPIC grant. The Basset-Avocado Advanced Energy Community (BAAEC) is a local community that is defined as the site host of the project. The award-winning consortium will deploy an innovative and versatile model focused on providing affordable, locally produced renewable energy and energy services at scale within a disadvantaged community. Disadvantaged Communities refers to the most polluted communities across California and are eligible to receive up to 35% of the Cap & Trade yearly total proceeds for their decarbonization.
The BAAEC, a 28,000-resident disadvantaged community will serve enrolled participants using a complex systemcomprised of seven main components:
1) a digital application to engage and guide community members towards decarbonization: “people first;”
2) a smart community solar and storage system to offset annual electricity load;
3) a campus microgrid resiliency hub to provide clean back-up power to the community in emergencies, severe heat days or blackouts;
4) a prosumer network and a virtual power plant integrating 50 single-family homes equipped with solar photovoltaic and battery storage to demonstrate a Blockchain community network pilot;
5) a mobile gridthat includes a community operated EV van pooling serviceand a network of fast EV charging stations to decrease the use of fossil fuel vehicles, reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality;
6) an indoor-outdoor smart pollution sensor network including an IoT-based NOx emissions monitoring system to measure and improve emissions from fossil fuel vehicles still operating within the community; and
7) a mobile living laboratory to periodically perform rounds throughout the community, measuring and reporting real-time decarbonization impact.
The design of the prototype began as Phase I in 2016. This Phase II is expected to start implementation by June 2020, targeting to be completed by 2023.
According to Luis Felipe Cano, Community Electricity CEO, “California’s disadvantaged communities and the Cap & Trade money allocation across these vulnerable communities, give rise to the perfect formula to design a feasible community-scale decarbonization strategy. Our data-driven decarbonization protocol – a new social and economic community system – is designed to empower community members towards clean electrification resulting in multiple collective gains, including quality of life improvement and economic benefits derived from the sale of locally produced electricity. The motivation and potential are huge – approximately two thousand similar disadvantaged communities could benefit from this protocol inside California, and even more when we replicate the formula outside the state.” Cano added, “we are excited to be part of the co-development of this multi-asset community-scale prototype using blockchain, the biggest and most versatile in the world when built out.”
Funding for the project comes from the Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) Program, which supports clean energy research in California. The BAAEC Prototype Phase I and Phase II total investment will be close to $20 million dollars, including partner matching funds. Additional partners in the prototype build-out include: ACLIMA, Ampere Energy, EnelX, Google, Green Commuter/EVShare, Grid Alternatives, IoT SENSORCOM, Purple Air, Solarays, Sonnen, Space AI, StrongBlock, Tetra Innovations Group, Tritium, and Winn Energy Control.
About the Energy Coalition
The Energy Coalition (TEC) is a California-based 501(c)3 nonprofit with over 45 years of experience designing and implementing programs and strategies that transform energy use and empower communities to take action. By bringing ideas, technology, and expertise to public agencies, businesses, educators, policy makers and others, TEC is creating the building blocks for a new energy economy in which communities become energy-producing networks and clean energy becomes affordable and accessible for everyone.
About Community Electricity