BACC Partners
Lockheed's smart grid aims PDF Print Email
Written by Rafael Reyes   
Monday, 08 November 2010 00:09

BACC partner Lockheed Martin is leveraging its security expertise with the aim of becoming a serious player in the smart grid space.

Lockheed Martin, maker of jet fighters and spacecraft and designer of top-secret government networks, has turned to the smart grid with a vengeance. The gigantic defense contractor has been helping utilities design, manage and secure smart meter networks, distribution grid sensor systems and microgrids for years, but in the past year has ramped up its efforts.


$ 2.8M MTC Grant for EV Fleet National Demonstration Project PDF Print Email
Written by Rafael Reyes   
Wednesday, 27 October 2010 01:53

Bay Area Climate Collaborative Announces $2.8M MTC Grant for Government EV Fleet National Demonstration Project

Project to Bring Electric Vehicles to Government Fleets to Reduce Dependence on Oil, Curb Emissions, and Catalyze National Adoption

SAN JOSE, C.A., Oct. 27, 2010 – The Bay Area Climate Collaborative (BACC) today announced that the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) has awarded a $2.8 million grant to bring 90 electric vehicles (EVs) to government fleets across the San Francisco metro region. The BACC is working in partnership with Alameda County and a total of 11 jurisdictions including Sonoma County, and the cities of San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose.

Together with matching funds provided by participating agencies, the Local Government EV Fleet National Demonstration Project is worth $5 million. The grant is a part of MTC’s $33 million Climate Innovation Grants supporting clean transportation initiatives including electric taxis, car-share programs, and regional infrastructure for EVs.

“We’re thrilled to be the lead agency on this national demonstration project,” said Alameda County Fleet Manager Doug Bond. “We see an opportunity to showcase these vehicles not just locally but on a national scale, as well.”

Alameda County was awarded the NAFA Fleet Management Association Green Fleet honorable mention, and is ranked nationally as #25 in the Government Magazine's Green Fleet Awards. Additionally, Mr. Bond is a member of the Public Fleet Supervisor's Association Board.

“One of Sonoma County’s goals is to replace as many vehicles as possible with electric-vehicles and hybrids,” said Sonoma County Fleet Manager Dave Head. “We’ve moved aggressively on adding hybrids to the fleet and have seen a real cost benefit. All-electric vehicles are a natural next step for us.”

Sonoma County and Alameda County were each named one of the top 100 best fleets in 2010 by Government Fleet Magazine.

The Local Government EV Fleet National Demonstration Project will include detailed analysis as well as regional and national outreach to catalyze adoption of EVs in fleets nationwide. Anticipated to have a net annual CO2 emission reduction of 439,639 lbs overall, these vehicles are expected to cost approximately 3 cents per mile to fuel, compared to 10 to 15 cents per mile for typical gas vehicles.

“Electric vehicles reduce costs and lessen our dangerous dependence on polluting foreign oil,” said Rafael Reyes, Director of the Bay Area Climate Collaborative. “The Local Government EV Fleet National Demonstration Project provides an innovative model that can be emulated nationwide.”

About the Bay Area Climate Collaborative
The Bay Area Climate Collaborative (BACC) is an initiative launched by the mayors of San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland to accelerate clean energy in the San Francisco Bay Area region. With its ambitious 10 point action plan, the BACC is driving innovation, such as an exciting $5 million project to bring electric vehicles to Bay Area municipal fleets in a national demonstration project. For more information on the BACC, please visit:

Last Updated on Sunday, 19 December 2010 20:09
Better Place, GE plug in PDF Print Email
Written by Rafael Reyes   
Thursday, 23 September 2010 15:10

BACC partner Better Place has struck a partnership with GE:

Under the new partnership, GE and Better Place will develop a battery financing program, beginning with a project to finance 10,000 batteries in Israel and Denmark.

The two companies will also push for electrification of corporate fleets.

Through the deal GE will also make its WattStation charger launched earlier this year in San Francisco compatible with Better Place's network.

The entry of GE earlier this year signaled a dramatic step up in the competition and maturation of the electric vehicle market.  With a market cap of over $160 billion, GE is larger than any individual automaker (Toyota being the largest at over $110).

GE brings financing clout, an essential component, and marketing reach.  But this deal also signals the importance of the backend part of the business model of charger startups - it's not just the chargers, but it's also the network.

In another sign players are looking ahead, GM has begun testing having batteries put power back on the grid to smooth electrical demand eg: "vehicle to grid".  Still a way off but it is perhaps a key strategy to support renewable energy.



Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 October 2010 02:52
Walmart gives MiaSole, SolarCity nod PDF Print Email
Written by Rafael Reyes   
Tuesday, 21 September 2010 02:47

Walmart is all about scale.  And with its initiative to ultimately generate all it's power for its stores from clean energy it has potential to shape the market.  That target does not have a date and given its 8,400 locations, it has a long way to go but it is taking steps.  And today's announcement giving the nod to a couple Bay Area companies is notable.

Walmart is hiring SolarCity to install up to 15 megawatts of solar panels at 20-30 locations in California and Arizona. In its press release, Walmart highlighted its cash-rich ability to help lower the costs of the newer of the two technologies: solar panels from MiaSole that use layers of copper, indium, gallium and selenium to convert sunlight into electricity. First Solar, the publicly-traded leader in the thin film solar space, uses cadmium telluride as its semiconductor material.

The selection of thin-film panels for many of these locations signals the growing importance of thin-film.  While less efficient it is less expensive and easier to deploy (roof weight capacity can be a point of concern with standard panels).  And Walmart engaged SolarCity - sponsor of the BACC's recent Sustainable Cities event.  USAToday reports:

With the new solar installations, SolarCity will own the panels and sell the power they generate to Wal-Mart at a set price for 10 years. Typically, such commercial power-purchase agreements run longer, often 20 years, so that the energy provider has more time to recoup costs.

In recent years, Wal-Mart has pressed for 10-year deals so that it has more flexibility to relocate stores, Ozment says. SolarCity has never done a 10-year power-purchase agreement, CEO Lyndon Rive says. It's doing so with Wal-Mart because of the deal's size and the future potential.

Walmart has gone the route of a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) which has the effect of reducing or eliminating the up-front cost.  BACC partners Joint Venture and SolarTech are advancing efforts to increase the use of PPAs since up-front costs remain one of the obstacles for many eager to install solar power.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 October 2010 02:51
BACC Welcomes CPUC as New Partner PDF Print Email
Written by Rafael Reyes   
Wednesday, 15 September 2010 05:25

The Bay Area Climate Collaborative (BACC) is thrilled to report a new partner in the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). The CPUC will be represented on the BACC's Steering Committee by Pete Skala, head of the CPUC Climate Strategies section.

Within the Commission, Mr. Skala’s team provides subject matter expertise and assists in the development of policies related to California’s emissions performance standard, combined heat and power facilities, electric and alternatively fueled vehicles, carbon capture and sequestration projects, and a variety of other energy sector greenhouse gas reduction technologies and initiatives.

Beyond the Commission’s own activities, Mr. Skala and his team provide energy sector expertise to the entities responsible for developing state, regional,  and federal policies – most notably the California Air Resources Board, the California Climate Action Team, and the Western Climate Initiative – to ensure that the policies developed in these forums provide the correct incentives, signals, and resources to achieve energy sector emissions reductions.

The CPUC plays a critical role in advancing energy and water innovations, and we are looking forward to accelerating the clean energy economy together.



Last Updated on Sunday, 19 December 2010 20:09

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