The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority (SFMTA) operates one of the nation’s largest fleets of clean, electric-powered buses, light-rail vehicles, and cable-cars. Yet Muni just got even greener thanks to Hetch Hetchy Power, the City’s public power utility. They are the first customer to take advantage of Hetch Hetchy Power Premium electricity service.
Hetch Hetchy Power Premium is an additional electricity option available to all Hetchy Power customers. What makes it different from Hetch Hetchy Power’s general service?
While all of Hetch Hetchy’s Power comes from clean, 100% greenhouse gas-free sources, not all of this energy meets California’s stricter Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) requirements. Hetch Hetchy Power Premium, by contrast, is sourced solely from power plants that meet RPS criteria, like Hetch Hetchy Power’s Kirkwood hydroelectric plant near O’Shaughnessy Dam and City-owned solar arrays located in San Francisco.
Hetch Hetchy Power Premium now allows customers to access 100% RPS-eligible power, which often is a requirement to participate in corporate sustainability initiatives or other environmental programs . Thanks to Hetchy Power Premium, the SFMTA maximized the financial benefits it received under California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) program.
Overseen by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), this program rewards entities such as SFMTA that use cleaner low-carbon transportation fuels to help California reach its climate goals. By participating in Hetchy Premium, the SFMTA was able to receive higher financial credits (about 40% more) compared to what they would have received under Hetch Hetchy Power’s general service. To date, SFMTA has earned several million more from the LCFS program, which will be used to maintain service during the COVID-19 pandemic and for additional environmental benefits in the future.
Hetch Hetchy Power Premium is a valuable service offering. Hetchy Power customers can surpass sustainability goals and maximize financial benefits by being able to participate in environmental programs that require use of RPS-eligible energy. That’s a win for them, the SFPUC, and the City.