Opinion: The Earth does not need us, we need the Earth
By Natasha Wist
February 8, 2017 — Hollister, CA
The importance of supporting Monterey Bay Community Power project in these critical times
I recently attended a Hollister City Council meeting where the council and the public were presented with a proposal to join the Monterey Bay Community Power Project that would provide Community Choice Energy to three counties and the cities within these counties: Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito.
I was not familiar with the study and proposal so listened carefully to the half hour presentation which was complex but clearly laid out by the presenter in words and graphs and pictures. I also had the one-page fact sheet and the MBCP technical study (eight pages) and the executive summary (10 pages). These I read when I got home. I was referred to an excellent website MPBCommunityPower.org for further information.
PG&E will be required to provide clean electricity to the grid and will provide the transmission lines and repairs, billing and service. The rebates from using this energy will be returned to the community at rates higher than people with rooftop solar now receive and keeps rate-payer money local to stimulate our region.
This is a beginning, not an ideal situation in which our local economy could control the production, transmission and repair and billing and keep all the profits for our local community needs such as expanded libraries, nonprofit YMCA, parks and roads, etc. We are required to work with PG&E, a giant corporation, because that is the only game in town. However, this is the start of small towns keeping taxpayers money in the places where they live.
[Editor’s note: “Monterey Bay Community Power is a regional project among local government agencies that aims to provide electricity to residents and businesses throughout Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz Counties through the new Community Choice Energy (CCE) model. CCE enables communities to choose clean-source power at a cost equivalent to PG&E, while retaining PG&E’s role in maintaining power lines and providing customer service. The CCE model helps ensure local economic vitality because money from rates paid by local customers stays local. Surplus revenues that would normally flow to PG&E will stay in the community to help fund renewable energy projects, create jobs and stimulate the economy.” Source: YouTube]
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