Local Governments Empowering Our Communities
In 2010, the RCPA joined other Bay Area partners with an interest in local government engagement on energy efficiency to create the Bay Area Regional Energy Network (BayREN).
BayREN is a collaboration of the nine counties that make up the San Francisco Bay Area. Led by the Association of Bay Area Governments, BayREN provides regional-scale energy efficiency programs, services, and resources. BayREN is funded by utility ratepayer funds through the California Public Utilities Commission, as well as other sources, drawing on the expertise, knowledge, and proven track record of Bay Area local governments.
BayREN is a highly effective and trusted group of local governments that deliver targeted, integrated, and regional-scale climate solutions focused on energy, water, and resilience.
BayREN provides three main areas of expertise and services:
- Promoting Healthy and Energy Efficiency Buildings for single family and multifamily residents and soon for small and medium commercial property owners
- Building Government Capacity for local governments to increase their impacts with training, mentoring and a range of resources throughout the nine Bay Area counties
- Reducing Carbon Emissions by catalyzing regional activities and connecting them to existing initiatives.
For the most recent reports on BayREN Program impacts, visit: www.bayren.org.
Single Family Homes
Home+ offers cash rebates for your home improvements, plus certified contractors and support every step of the way. Rebates are available for eligible energy efficiency upgrades including air sealing, duct sealing, insulation, high-efficiency furnaces and air conditioners, high efficiency water heaters, and more. More information can be found here: www.bayrenresidential.org
A key value of the BayREN and RCPA approach is building partnerships with existing groups and other implementers to avoid duplication of effort and leverage local resources. RCPA has been collaborating with the Sonoma County Energy and Sustainability Division to provide a seamless one-stop-shop experience for local property owners, providing energy upgrade incentive and rebate information, a list of certified contractors, and financing options in one convenient package. The Sonoma County Energy and Sustainability Division connects Sonoma County residents with all resources available to them including BayREN resources: http://sonomacountyenergy.org/homepage/
Energy Upgrade California’s Bay Area Multifamily Building Enhancements offers cash rebates and free energy consulting for multifamily properties that undertake energy upgrades. The program assists in planning energy saving improvements designed to save 15% or more of a building’s energy usage and provides $750 per unit in rebates to help pay for the upgrade.
The program is open to multifamily buildings with five or more attached dwelling units in the nine county Bay Area (Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, Sonoma).
Building Energy Codes & Standards
The BayREN Codes & Standards Program promotes and provides trainings that engage building department staff and the building professionals they serve to increase understanding of new Energy Code developments and best practices for compliance (permit applicants) and enforcement (building departments). The RCPA works with local building officials and industry groups to bring BayREN trainings to Sonoma County locations.
Current training curricula available can be found and requested at www.bayrencodes.org/services/trainings.
BayREN also hosts quarterly Regional Forums at which elected officials, appointed policy board members, local building department Chief Building Officials, and regional codes and standards advocates focus on high-level policy and program design issues on energy efficiency and energy code compliance.
Upcoming Forum agendas and past Forum materials can be viewed at: www.bayrencodes.org/events.