FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Will my bill go up?
Will existing PG&E energy efficiency and other programs, such as CARE, continue for residential and business customers?
How do I sign up?
What is clean, or renewable, energy?
Why is more renewable energy beneficial?
Will MBCP offer one rate or product, or will there be choices for customers?
How will MBCP generate revenue?
How will MBCP procure electricity?
What if I live in a mobile home park with one master meter?
As a customer, will I still get a bill from PG&E?
Who do I call when my power goes out?
Can I opt out?
How is MBCP governed?
How was MBCP formed?
When will MBCP begin providing power to customers?

Will my bill go up?

No. Rates will be equivalent to PG&E. Exit fees charged by PG&E will be absorbed by MBCP. Best of all, MBCP will offer an annual rebate.

Will existing PG&E energy efficiency and other programs, such as CARE, continue for residential and business customers?

Yes. Currently available PG&E programs will continue.

How do I sign up?

There is no need to sign up. All current PG&E residential and business customers will be automatically enrolled into MBCP, beginning spring 2018. Customers will have the choice to opt out and return to PG&E.

What is clean, or renewable, energy?

Sources of energy that are either continuously resupplied by the sun or tap inexhaustible resources, such as wind, solar, biomass, hydropower, and geothermal energy.

Why is more renewable energy beneficial?

The investment in renewable energy provides economic, environmental and national security benefits. More jobs are created from the development of renewable energy than fossil fuel energy. Buildings consume 42% of America’s energy (and 72% of its electricity). Transportation consumes 71% of U.S. oil – (13 million barrels/day). Eliminating waste in the built environment and transportation sectors will make America stronger and safer by keeping that $1 billion/day oil-import cost at home. The U.S. would be less buffeted by volatile oil prices and less anxious to defend access to oil. The reduction of harmful greenhouse gas emissions is critical to combat the devastating and costly challenges of global warming.

Will MBCP offer one rate or product, or will there be choices for customers?

MBCP’s standard product will source 100% carbon free power. There are also plans to offer a premium product that would be a 100% California-sourced carbon free power.

How will MBCP generate revenue?

CCEs, such as MBCP, are run by a not-for-profit local public agency and operate as a market driven social enterprise that generates its own revenue. Ratepayers provide revenue, and this revenue provides the local CCE with a surplus that can be used to fund local electricity generation, lower electricity rates and pay off debt.

How will MBCP procure electricity?

A CCE, such as MBCP, must submit a plan to the California Public Utilities commission that specifies how it will purchase 115% of the estimated electricity demand for its area for a period of one year. CCEs negotiate the purchase of electricity on the open market by entering into power purchase agreements with energy providers. All energy that is generated is identified by certificates that guarantee the type of energy and location of production. CCEs must also enter into a contract with PG&E to transmit the electricity that the CCE buys over PG&E’s transmission lines.

What if I live in a mobile home park with one master meter?

The park’s home owners association should make a decision regarding whether or not to buy the park’s energy from the CCE or PG&E.

As a customer, will I still get a bill from PG&E?

Yes, your utility bill will still come from PG&E and PG&E will continue to provide you with customer service. PG&E will continue to bill you for your natural gas and will indicate that you are buying electricity from your local CCE.

Who do I call when my power goes out?

PG&E is responsible for the transmission of gas and electricity. PG&E will still maintain the utility grid. Any issues with the delivery of your utilities will continue to be handled by PG&E.

Can I opt out?

Yes. All current PG&E customer will be notified by mail on four separate occasions (two prior to automatic enrollment and two following enrollment) to opt out of MBCP.

How is MBCP governed?

MBCP is governed by a Policy Board, comprised of elected officials representing the member cities and counties, and an Operations Board, comprised of administrative professionals representing the member cities and counties.

How was MBCP formed?

In 2013, the County of Santa Cruz received a grant from the State of California and others to consider CCE for the Monterey Bay Region. A Planning and Development Advisory Committee, comprised of 21 local governments and several regional agencies, met for nearly two years to assess program feasibility. A technical study was completed in 2016, which showed MBCP could offer cleaner power at competitive, potentially lower rates. In the first quarter of 2017, the three counties and 16 cities passed local ordinances to join MBCP. In March 2017, MBCP was officially formed as a Joint Powers Authority.

When will MBCP begin providing power to customers?

An automatic enrollment process, beginning with business customers, is expected take place from spring through summer 2018.