January 19, 2023

On the Critical Path for 2023 & Beyond

By: Jenna Barron
Watch Dr. Holmes Hummel address Emerson Collective’s annual Demo Day showcase.





2022 has been a watershed year for Clean Energy Works. We have seen an unprecedented interest in our pursuit of a large-scale transition to a sustainable clean energy economy on terms that are both inclusive and equitable.

1. Residential Buildings

  • Record adoption of inclusive utility investment in energy efficiency upgrades 

Today, we are actively supporting field partners in 17 states to secure adoption of inclusive utility investment. Eight years ago only Kansas, New Hampshire, Kentucky, and Hawaii had inclusive utility investment programs with strong consumer protections. In the last year, work to advance inclusive utility investment programs and policies has expanded in more states including Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, and Virginia.

Eight states have already approved enabling regulations, four states are on their way to formal adoption, and formal due diligence by regulators and utilities has begun in nine additional states. 

As of March 29, 2022, there are currently 16 active inclusive utility investment programs. All 16 current inclusive utility investment programs meet criteria for PAYS® that include strong consumer protections.

Illinois and Minnesota stakeholders are continuing to chart their respective courses, drawing on everything we can find and offer to inform the field.  We are learning from them about ways to engage detractors and support strategic organizing responses in the field.

Champions in North Carolina are preparing comments on a permanent (not pilot) tariffed on-bill program filed by the largest utility in the country (Duke) – first inspired by one of the smallest (Roanoke Electric).  We also see 3 pending proposals in California on the verge of getting a decision from their commission.

2. Transportation

  • Michigan approves inclusive utility investment for transit buses:

DTE Energy, in Detroit, became the first utility in the United States to get approval for an inclusive utility investment program for transit buses. Clean Energy Works supported DTE staff in the development of the tariff, provided expert testimony in the proceeding, and is excited to support the implementation of this pilot. This is a  long-sought breakthrough. Electrification of transportation, starting with clean transit, is now at hand.  We look forward to implementation! Read more.

  • Roanoke Electric extended its partnership with a pioneering pilot research project on vehicle-grid integration with a concept proposal for a grant from the DOE Smart Grid program. Their project will incorporate EV school buses, Solar PAYS®, and residential bidirectional chargers, which has the potential to bring clean energy to some of the communities that are most vulnerable to climate change.

3. International

Internationally, our work in Colombia has served as a model for our partnership with the TUMI E-Bus Mission which has a goal of inspiring 500+ cities to procure 100,000 electric buses by 2025. We led capacity building webinars for Latin American cities, including ones Colombia, Mexico and Brazil, as well as African and Asian cities. In November, Margarita Parra, our Transportation and International Program Director  had the opportunity to travel to Indonesia and provide training on different business models and the use of inclusive utility investments for transportation electrification.

4. Organizational advancement

Clean Energy Works is thrilled to be growing. In 2022, we added four new team members! We are thrilled to introduce our inspiring colleagues:

Clean Energy Works is also excited to announce Dr. Destenie Nock has joined our Board, adding exceptional expertise to guide strategies for accelerating clean energy upgrades where they are needed most.  Dr. Destenie Nock is a leader in energy justice, environmental justice, sustainable energy transitions, and the energy-poverty-climate change nexus. Dr. Nock is an Assistant Professor of Engineering and Public Policy and Civil and Environmental Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. Learn more about Dr. Nock.

All of these signs of gains in the field are only possible because of the increasing strength of internal systems. These are the structures that support organizational growth and the enduring engagement with field partners who are path-making on multiple fronts.

We are thankful to our partners, funders, and friends across the country and world for working diligently with us to make great strides. The momentum is clear and we need your help to accelerate change. Here are ways that you can get involved:

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