This new program, still in the development stage, aims at improving the City’s already great environmental record. A collection of qualified individuals was put together to outline some strategies and goals dealing with environmental and development issues. This “Climate Change Working Group” (CCWG) presented 7 measures, which the City adopted as a preliminary implementation plan on July 10, 2008.
The work continues on these measures until they are ready to be adopted as Municipal Code Ordinances. Of these seven measures, #4 and part of #5 come under the purview of the Planning and Building Division. The findings for these and their implementation plans are described below:
Measure #5; Solar & Energy Efficiency Conversion
The City of Chula Vista Climate Change Working Group’s (CCWG) recommendation #5 urges the City to facilitate widespread installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, thermal solar (hot water) and other non fossil fuel-based renewable energy options on commercial, residential and municipal facilities by developing and implementing a renewable energy conversion program. As proposed, the “Solar & Energy Efficiency Conversion” (SEEC) program is intended to help the average residential and commercial consumer overcome institutional barriers, upfront capital costs and time constraints to installing renewable energy, water conservation and energy efficiency upgrades. The program provides participants a cost effective, less time-consuming installation and financing option for upgrading their homes and facilities, while creating a sustainable economic stimulus and job creation program for Chula Vista. The program’s primary components include:
- Identifying the energy and water upgrades that help reduce ratepayer’s monthly costs.
- Executing a competitive bid process that identifies participating contractors and establishes maximum prices and minimum warranty and service standards.
- Aggregating participants geographically to harness their collective purchasing authority and maximize the potential for installation efficiency and savings.
- Establishing voluntary special assessment districts to provide participants with a financing option to fund their improvements.
- Linking local vocational job training in energy and water conservation with focused business recruitment.
- Updating municipal codes to encourage renewable energy and conservation product installations and to remove institutional barriers. This segment of the plan is under the purview of the Planning and Building Division.