Central Coast Community Energy (3CE) recently released a Request for Proposals (RFP) for large-scale, renewable energy generation and storage projects to be sited within  the agency’s service area that includes its 33 communities across Monterey, San Benito, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Santa Cruz Counties. 

In addition to driving local economic opportunities for the Central Coast region, eligible project proposals  have the potential to drive technological advancements and progress toward 3CE’s goal of 100% clean and renewable energy by 2030, creating new long-term renewable energy resources for the region and  state, and continuing the positive regional re-investment that 3CE has stimulated since launching in 2018. 

“This RFP is an effort to investigate the development of large scale, local renewable generation  opportunities.” shared Tom Habashi, CEO at 3CE. “We’re looking forward to review the  proposals because this opportunity carries so much potential in terms of local jobs, economic  stimulation, and of course creating new renewable energy resources and generating clean electricity locally. The energy storage component could also become a big contributor to  improved energy resiliency for the Central Coast.” 

The RFP for locally sited clean and renewable power supply with the ability to add storage or a standalone  energy storage system is designed to explore two possible scenarios: 1) Renewable generation with the  ability to add storage, requiring a minimum of 20 megawatts and a long-term agreement that lasts 10 or  more years, 2) Standalone energy storage that requires sizing of 1MW or larger and a long-term  agreement that lasts 5 or more years. In either scenario, projects could be owned by developers and/or  landowners. 

In terms of the type of renewable energy to be developed, 3CE is open to all eligible renewable resources  such as biofuel, solar, wind, geothermal, or other eligible sources that harness renewable energy. One of the unique benefits of 3CE’s RFP involves not requiring land entitlements or being in the interconnection queue in order to bid. This flexibility allows for more local developers to investigate possible sites  throughout the service area. Finally, 3CE is looking at turning on any potential sites by 2026 which  provides more time and preparation for local generation and/or energy storage facilities to schedule for  grid interconnectivity. 

“To meet the economic and environmental goals of the communities we serve, we need  to be cost conscious,” adds Habashi. “Between the high cost of Central Coast real estate,  and the costs associated with interconnection to the greater western grid, developing  local generation can have a lot of hurdles, but we’re committed to evaluating local  opportunities working with local landowners and developers to make it happen.” 

Proposals must be submitted per RFP guidelines by 5pm on February 17. For more information, bidders  may join 3CE’s webinar addressing questions from bidders on January 29 at 1pm. RFP, webinar and  supporting documents may be found at https://3cenergy.org/solicitations/ 

About Central Coast Community Energy  

Central Coast Community Energy (3CE) is a public agency that sources competitively priced electricity  from clean and renewable energy resources. 3CE is locally controlled and governed by board members  who represent each community served by the agency. Revenue generated by 3CE stays local and helps  keep electricity rates affordable for customers, while also funding innovative energy programs designed  to lower greenhouse gas emissions and stimulate economic development. 3CE serves more than 400,000  customers throughout the Central Coast, including agriculture, commercial and residential customers in  communities located within Monterey, San Benito, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Santa Cruz  counties. Learn more at 3CEnergy.org and on social media, including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter  @3CEnergy.