Rochester, NY: Community Power Launched to Develop 100% Renewable Energy Program

The city of Rochester is the largest city in New York state to move forward with community choice aggregation.

The City of Rochester announced that it will launch a renewable energy program intended to provide their residents and small businesses with locally-sourced 100% renewable energy at a low, fixed rate. Offered through Rochester Community Power, the community choice aggregation (“CCA” or “community choice”) program will leverage the collective buying power of Rochester’s more than 80,000 Rochester Gas & Electric (RG&E) utility account holders to solicit bids from energy suppliers. Rochester, the largest city in the NY State to date to launch a CCA program, intends for its program to also focus on delivering benefits for low income customers  As this program only impacts from where electricity is sourced, consumers would remain RG&E customers for reliable power delivery. The City has selected Joule Assets (Joule) to serve as program administrator.

“I am very excited to see our community choice aggregation program reach the point where we can now show our residents how it can help them save and preserve the environment at the same time,” said Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren. “I am looking forward to working with the folks from Joule Community Power as we roll out this program and advance our efforts to become a cleaner, greener, more sustainable city. Protecting our environment helps create more jobs, safer and more vibrant neighborhoods, and better educational opportunities for our citizens.”

Joule CEO Mike Gordon stated, “Community choice programs empower municipalities, rather than the state, to select the default source of electricity supply for residents. Through these programs, municipalities can better protect consumers while helping them source clean energy, gain price stability, and save money. Through community choice programs, we seek empower communities to become energy independent through 100% renewable energy and local energy choice.”

CCA is promoted by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority (NYSERDA) as a priority climate action. Joule, an experienced CCA Administrator in NY State, developed an implementation plan that has been approved the NY State Public Service Commission. Joule’s CCA model empowers communities to access cleaner and cheaper electricity, guaranteed savings for consumers, lower fixed rates on renewable power and helps facilitate a demand for and the development of local clean energy projects. Roctricity, Joule’s local operating partner for public outreach and customer service, was founded by sustainability professionals with a mission of advancing clean energy projects in the Greater Rochester area.

Glenn Weinberg, Director at Joule Community Power, said, “As the largest city in NY State to move forward with CCA, Rochester’s program sets an important precedent for community-scale clean energy programs, and toward achievement of aggressive state goals.”

“As a City resident, I’m glad to have the City engaging in this program,” commented Melissa Carlson, a partner at Roctricity. “This is an easy way for us all to access renewable electricity at competitive rates. Together, we will spur the growth of renewable energy on the grid and promote a cleaner energy future.


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