San José Clean Energy: Energy and Innovation for Businesses

Guest Blogpost by Mark Bachman
Account Services Manager, San José Clean Energy


San José Clean Energy (SJCE) is the new Community Choice Energy program providing cleaner and cheaper electricity generation services to residents and businesses in San José.

Operated by the City, this local not-for-profit utility is more responsive to customer needs and more flexible in creating solutions.

SJCE will procure a cleaner power mix than PG&E, with more renewable energy and a 1% discount on generation charges to start. This means that energy prices have a small downward pressure, and companies will have much of their work reducing and eventually eliminating scope 2 emissions done for them.

In addition to receiving cleaner, cheaper power, there are more ways that businesses can benefit from SJCE service. SJCE’s account services team is dedicated to supporting commercial customers. Here are a few ways:

  1. Data Collection– Whether it is tracking the impact of an energy efficiency project or evaluating the cost implications of installing EV charging, gathering data is a key step for almost every energy project. In addition to billing information, SJCE has access to historical and ongoing interval data for all customers in the city. Contact the SJCE Account Services team for help collecting the data for your account.
  1. Rate Plan Analysis– Major changes to the Time of Use periods (peak, partial peak, and off-peak) will be open to businesses at the end of 2019 and made mandatory at the end of 2020 by the CPUC. The changes are due to huge surpluses of solar energy on the grid during peak solar production times. Peak hours will be moved from the middle of the day to the evening, and off-peak hours will be moved to more closely coincide with solar production. The SJCE Account Services team can help businesses understand the financial impacts of these new rates on their operations.
  1. Incentives– In 2019 SJCE will be developing and planning to launch its initial program offerings. SJCE will use a portion of surplus revenues to fund community energy programs that reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and support local customers. Potential programs cover a huge number of technologies, including energy efficiency, EV’s, EV charging infrastructure, battery storage, and building electrification. Businesses are encouraged to contact SJCE staff and the Community Advisory Commission (CAC) to tell them what programs and incentives would have the greatest financial and GHG reduction impact.

In the future, SJCE plans to launch new products and services and explore ways to help customers receive more value from their existing distributed energy resources (DER)’s (batteries, fuel cells, EV charging, solar, etc.) by connecting them to new market opportunities and layering on ancillary revenue streams.

San José is home to some of the world’s most sophisticated and innovative buyers of energy. SJCE looks forward to establishing long term partnerships with our customers to do the vital work of fighting climate change and decarbonizing our local economy.

The SJCE Account Services team looks forward to hearing from you: