The CSI Program Evaluation Plan describes the Commission’s structure and implementation strategy for the measurement and evaluation (M&E) of the California Solar Initiative. In addition to facilitating effective management of the CSI program, this CSI Program Evaluation Plan (Evaluation Plan or Plan) supports reporting requirements contained in relevant legislation and Commission decisions. The CSI Program Evaluation Plan and reporting process for the CSI program is consistent with:
- Requirements of Senate Bill (SB) 1 (Murray 2006);
- Commission precedent on program evaluation of previous distributed generation programs;
- Commission decisions in the Distributed Generation and CSI proceedings related to program evaluation; and
- Commission decisions in Energy Efficiency proceedings related to evaluation.
The CSI Program Evaluation Plan was updated on August 2, 2013. The updated Plan was developed by Energy Division in consultation with the CSI Program Administrators (PAs). The Plan is intended to help the Commission and the CSI PAs carry out the intent of the CSI program. The program’s impacts are independently evaluated, measured, and verified to provide reliable results for decision makers, resource planners, and program implementers.
The Plan includes four main elements: 1) progress reports; 2) program evaluation reports; 3) annual program assessments, and 4) publication of program information through the www.californiasolarstatistics.com website. Beginning with the August 2, 2013 updated Plan, the M&E effort will include publication of information about distributed generation systems which did not participate in rebate programs.
The 2013 update Plan replaces the April 2011 CSI Program Evaluation Plan which is found in Appendix A of the Southern California Edison Advice Letter 2567-E. That plan in turn replaced the earlier one found in Appendix A of the 7/29/2008 Assigned Commissioner’s Ruling.
The CPUC is requesting performance data from customers on solar systems that were subsidized by rebates from the State of California-authorized rebate programs, including the California Solar Initiative, the Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP), the Emerging Renewables Program (ERP) and the Rebuild a Greener San Diego Solar Program. If you have a solar system on your home or commercial building that received any of these subsidies, then the CPUC wants to hear from you.
An effective CSI Program is important for the future success of the solar industry. To successfully gauge the CSI Program’s effectiveness, the CPUC will need performance data information from both large and small systems. The CPUC is requesting your assistance in collecting solar system performance data for systems that you have installed and for which you collect performance data. The collected solar system performance data will be used to understand:
- If the CSI Program is meeting its objective of optimizing solar system performance with incentives that encourage optimal system performance.
- The extent to which solar customers are contributing to electricity peak load reduction. (Answering this question requires 15-minute or hourly data as opposed to daily, monthly or annual production data.)
- The extent to which solar customers are contributing to greenhouse gas reductions.
- How solar system performance varies in different geographical regions.
- The effect of solar customers on California’s electricity grid.
- The cumulative impact of solar projects installed in PG&E, SDG&E and SCE territories.
To ensure the privacy and confidentiality of specific confidential customer and contractor data, all submissions of performance data will be aggregated for reports.
The CPUC and CSI Program Administrators thank you in advance for your consideration and valuable contribution to the program. For detailed information about submitting solar performance data, click here.