Energy Savings Assistance Programs


In November 2016, the California Public Utilities Commission issued a Final Decision authorizing the Energy Savings Assistance (ESA) programs and budgets for the four large investor-owned utilities. The ESA programs provide no cost energy efficiency services to low-income households. ESA programs provide services such as weatherization and appliance repair and replacement, reducing energy usage, lowering customers’ bills, as well as providing benefits in the form of health, comfort and safety. One of the changes made in the decision was an increased focus on serving multi-family buildings, including common areas. The decision created the Multi-Family Working Group to advise the CPUC and the utilities regarding this new effort.


The Public Advocates Office (the Office) Policy Position 

The Office advocates that the ESA program be as cost effective as possible, delivering the most benefits for the funds invested. The Office will continue to advise and advocate for increased cost-effectiveness and accountability as part of the Cost Effectiveness Working Group. The Office will also participate in the Multi-Family Working Group, advising regarding cost-effective policies in providing ESA services to multi-family buildings.


Proceeding Status

The Final Decision resolved the ESA program cycle for 2017-2010. However, follow up work will continue through various working groups. The Cost Effectiveness Working Groups will issue its final recommendations regarding tools to measure the ESA programs’ cost effectiveness, including an evaluation of health, comfort and safety benefits, by the 2nd Quarter of 2018.

The Multi-Family Working Group will help develop the utilities’ implementation plans for multi-family common areas, which will be filed by March 1, 2018.

See the Proceeding docket, which is consolidated with the 2017-2020 CARE program proceeding.