2008 Corporate Responsibility Report

How we are creating a smarter foundation for a sustainable future

Advancing Clean Energy Solutions for Our Customers

2008 California Solar Initiative
Applications by Program Administrator

PG&E is helping a growing number of customers install solar energy systems through the California Solar Initiative (CSI). In 2008, we interconnected more than 6,500 customer-owned solar power systems to the electric grid. This brought our total to more than 27,000 interconnected solar systems, more than any other utility in the country.

The overall goal of CSI is to create 3,000 MW of new, customer-installed solar capacity by December 2016, moving the state toward a cleaner energy future and helping to lower the cost of solar installations for customers. Importantly, because using energy more efficiently is the most cost-effective solution, customers must first complete an energy audit to qualify for the solar incentives.

As a CSI program administrator, PG&E paid more than $99 million in rebates for 97 MW of completed residential and commercial solar installations last year. This accounted for more than 60 percent of the total applications submitted in California (see chart to the right). PG&E also exceeded its target for processing solar applications in a timely fashion. Through CSI, PG&E has the potential to provide approximately $950 million in solar rebates to our customers.

In 2008, PG&E also began administering a program to provide solar incentives for low-income customers with affordable multi-family housing. PG&E also began coordinating solar incentives for new residential construction of single- and multi-family homes—a program that also strongly promotes energy-efficient building standards.

PG&E has also taken an active leadership role by educating our customers about solar energy. We held 56 solar classes in 2008, reaching 2,350 customers on a range of topics—from solar power basics to inspecting solar systems for code compliance. A webinar series provided another convenient opportunity for customers to learn about solar energy. We also partnered with cities to train local community leaders. This included holding a “Solar Champion” class with the San Francisco Department of the Environment and a solar power basics class on the city’s local government television channel.