I saw the credit on my bill or saw/heard an advertisement for the California Climate Credit. What is it?

The California Climate Credit is part of California’s efforts to fight climate change. The credit is from a state government program that requires power plants and other large industries that emit greenhouse gases to buy carbon pollution permits from auctions managed by the Air Resources Board.  The credit on your utility bill is your share of the payments from the State’s program.   To learn more about this credit, visit 
www.energyupgradeca.org/climatecredit.

Who is eligible for the California Climate Credit?

All California residential customers that receive electricity from an investor owned utility company, electric service provider or community choice aggregation provider. This includes customers of Pacific Gas & Electric, San Diego Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison, PacifiCorp, and Liberty Utilities, and community choice aggregators such as Marin Clean Energy (MCE) and Sonoma Clean Power. Customers will automatically receive the Climate Credit if they have an open account with the utility and are receiving utility service during the period the Credit is distributed.

Why am I receiving a California Climate Credit?

The California Public Utilities Commission decided to protect each household from cost increases and to give people additional opportunities to take advantage of energy and money-saving upgrades offered by your energy service provider.

Does the credit amount vary by electricity provider for residential customers?

Yes. However, the CA Climate Credit is distributed equally to each utility provider’s residential customers, regardless of energy consumption or bill amount. In other words, customers of Southern California Edison receive a different amount of the credit than do San Diego Gas & Electric customers. But all residential customers of  Southern California Edison receive the same amount.


When is the CA Climate Credit applied to accounts?

Twice per year in the April/May and October/November bills.


Is the credit amount connected to the amount of electricity I use?

No, all residential customers of the same electricity provider will receive an equal amount regardless of the amount of electricity they use. You are getting this credit as your share of payment from a state program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

What will customers see on the bill?

Customers will see the following:

  • A line Item “CA Climate Credit” or “California Climate Credit” on their bills with the amount of the credit.
  • A bill message briefly explaining the credit.

Will Net Energy Metered or NEM customers receive the credit on their bill?

Yes.

What if there is a credit remaining on the account balance after the application of the California Climate Credit?

Any carryover balance will be applied to your next month’s bill. If there is a balance, customers may call and ask for a refund check instead of having the balance applied to your next month’s bill.

How is the credit amount calculated?

The electricity utilities receive proceeds from greenhouse gas allowance auctions. Under rules adopted by the California Public Utilities Commission, which regulates California investor-owned utility companies, each utility divides all available funds equally among its residential households. To learn more, visit the CPUC’s website: www.cpuc.ca.gov/ClimateCredit.

If the credit is from the State, why is it on my utility bill?

The state decided that the most cost effective way to return these funds to customers was as a bill credit through your energy provider. This approach maximizes the amount of money each household and small business can receive.

For how many years will I receive a Climate Credit?

Right now the Climate Credit is expected to continue until at least 2020.

Will the size of my Climate Credit change over time?

Yes. The size of the Climate Credit depends on a large number of factors that can change from year to year, but the credit will always be calculated according to rules established by the California Public Utilities Commission.

Where is the money from/how is it generated?

Funds for the Climate Credit come from a state program to fight climate change by limiting the amount of greenhouse gases that our largest pollution sources emit into the atmosphere. Each year the state auctions a limited number of emission permits so that California can meet its goal of reducing its overall emissions down to 1990 levels by the year 2020. A portion of the proceeds from these auctions are returned to customers as a credit on their utility bills. This program is one of many developed as a result of the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, which put California at the forefront of efforts to battle climate change. Learn more about California’s efforts against climate change: www.energyupgradeca.org/ClimateCredit.

What is the Cap-and-Trade Program?

The Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, also known as “AB 32,” addresses climate change by placing an economy-wide “cap” on major sources of greenhouse gas emissions, such as refineries, power plants, industrial facilities and transportation fuels.  Each year the cap is lowered by approximately three percent, ensuring that California is reducing greenhouse gases.  Industries in this program must either reduce their greenhouse gas emissions or buy a limited quantity of pollution permits, also called “allowances.” Allowances can be bought through quarterly auctions managed by the Air Resources Board. This component of the state’s effort to combat climate change creates a powerful incentive to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and move to cleaner forms of energy.

For more information about the Global Warming Solutions Act, visit the Air Resource Board’s website at http://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/cc.htm

Will my electricity rates increase as a result of the price of carbon?

California has programs to encourage electricity providers to shift toward clean sources of energy, and one of those programs results in power plants facing a cost when they produce electricity from fuels that put greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. These costs are reflected in all customers’ electricity generation rates – the portion of electricity bills that represents the costs to generate electricity.

The rate increases for residential, small business, and some manufacturing customers will either be fully or partially offset by Climate Credits. The goal is to protect customers from overall cost increases on their bills and to give people additional opportunities to invest in energy and money-saving upgrades. To find out how to join California’s efforts to fight climate change visit the website EnergyUpgradeCA.org/climatecredit.

Will my electricity rates increase as a result of the price of carbon?

California has programs to encourage electricity providers to shift toward clean sources of energy, and one of those programs results in power plants facing a cost when they produce electricity from fuels that put greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. These costs are reflected in all customers’ electricity generation rates – the portion of electricity bills that represents the costs to generate electricity.

The rate increases for residential, small business, and some manufacturing customers will either be fully or partially offset by Climate Credits. The goal is to protect customers from overall cost increases on their bills and to give people additional opportunities to invest in energy and money-saving upgrades. To find out how to join California’s efforts to fight climate change visit the website EnergyUpgradeCA.org/climatecredit.

What is AB32?

It is California’s law to reduce carbon pollution and fight climate change. The California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, or AB 32, mandates that California reduce its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to 1990 levels by 2020, a reduction of about 15% from current levels. For more information on AB32:http://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/cc.htm.

Which government agency is in charge of enforcing the greenhouse gas reduction laws?

The lead agency is California Air Resources Board (ARB). This is also the agency that sets state standards to clean the air and promote clean vehicles and clean fuels.




The lead agency is California Air Resources Board (ARB). This is also the agency that sets state standards to clean the air and promote clean vehicles and clean fuels.
The lead agency is California Air Resources Board (ARB). This is also the agency that sets state standards to clean the air and promote clean vehicles and clean fuels.
The lead agency is California Air Resources Board (ARB). This is also the agency that sets state standards to clean the air and promote clean vehicles and clean fuels.
The lead agency is California Air Resources Board (ARB). This is also the agency that sets state standards to clean the air and promote clean vehicles and clean fuels.

Where can I find more information about California’s efforts to fight climate change?

You can go here.

For more detailed information, please refer to ARB’s AB 32 Scoping Plan, which details the state’s plan for meeting the goals of AB 32. You can find it here.