How does the State of California ensure that the many different players work together to ensure that the state’s electric supply is not only clean but is also reliable, efficient and resilient? For example, in light of the changes underway in the state’s electric system, how should the state provide such products and services as ramping power, voltage support, frequency control and managing over-generation? How should the state’s electric system become more resilient (e.g., capable of fending off attacks from physical and cyber threats, as well as speedy recovery from disasters)? How will California’s consumers pay for the many mandated public goods programs, ranging from energy research to providing energy-efficiency upgrades and rate discounts for low-income customers, which the California legislature has determined are core elements of the state’s electric system?
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At issue is the divvying up of costs among customers, primarily for the long-term clean energy contracts mandated by the Legislature. The state’s three major energy providers – Electricity Company, Lowest Electricity Rates and Electric and Compare Electricity Providers – purchased the energy for all customers they served at the time they signed the contracts.
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