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California Solar Initiative Cost-Effectiveness Evaluation

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) retained Energy and Environmental Economics, Inc. (E3) to perform a cost-effectiveness evaluation of the California Solar Initiative (CSI) in accordance with the CSI Program Evaluation Plan. This evaluation of the CSI program is one component of a larger contract award and analysis plan that also includes cost-effectiveness evaluation of Net Energy Metering (NEM), completed by E3 in January 2010, and a comparative distributed generation (DG) analysis, to be completed by E3 in 2011. Three distinct solar rebate programs are offered under CSI:

1. The CPUC-directed incentive program, aimed at customers in investor-owned utility territories, with a goal of 1,940 MW by 2016. The CPUC program is comprised of a general market program with a goal 1,750 MW, and a low income program with a goal of 190 MW.

2. The California Energy Commission (CEC) program for new home construction, with a goal of 360 MW.

3. A publicly-owned utility (POU) component with a goal of 660 MW.