It has now been more than a year since the October 2017 firestorm swept through our counties, destroying thousands of homes and businesses in its path.
As our neighboring cities to the Northeast take the title of California’s most destructive wildfire in history, we remember just how daunting and unpredictable the rebuilding process can be.
It is our hope that the communities of Paradise, Malibu, and others affected by the recent fires will find Sonoma Clean Power’s and other local agencies' response to the 2017 fires helpful as they begin the difficult road to recovery.
In the wake of the Tubbs and North Bay fires, SCP donated $1 million to 20 nonprofits helping with watershed protection, community services for survivors, and broader recovery efforts throughout Sonoma and Mendocino counties.
The wide range of recipients included the Redwood Empire Food Bank, the Community Foundation of Mendocino County, the Sonoma County Indian Health Project, and the Conservation Action Fund for Education, among many others.
This effort was led by an Ad Hoc Committee of SCP’s Board of Directors. The Committee assessed the immediate needs of the community and put forth initiatives that touched on all aspects of the recovery process, including:
To aid in local rebuilding efforts, SCP, PG&E, and the Bay Area Air Quality Management District came together to develop the Advanced Energy Rebuild (AER) program.
Through AER, fire survivors can receive incentives of up to $17,500 to help incorporate energy-saving features into their new homes. These features include water-efficient landscaping, all-electric appliances, electric vehicle charging stations, and even solar array systems with battery storage.
So far, we have received applications for over 140 advanced energy homes to be rebuilt in our two counties!
Our partnership with PG&E also led to us launching a series of regional classes on Net-Zero design and construction topics, including high-performance walls, designing efficient plumbing systems, residential HVAC systems, advanced wood framing, zero-net energy structures, and more.
Additionally, SCP offered trainings for property-owners, certified energy analysts (CEAs), and architects, designed to help them better understand how to apply for the AER program and how to become more familiar with the energy-saving options available for new homes. We are delighted to report that over 490 community members took advantage of these workshops.
Helping residents design and build homes that emit less pollution, use less energy, and lower a homeowner's utility bills is a role that we never imagined would be ours 5 years ago when we launched. However, the programs and partnerships that formed after these fires are proof that, as a community, we will adapt and together we will recover.
To learn more about the AER program, click here.
To read about the first all-electric home completed through AER, click here.
Helping our community rebuild and recover.
Building sheds at the 'Inspiring Hope' Sonoma County rebuild event
AER workshop on Heat Pump Water Heating Systems
Rebuilding Workshop and Resource Fair in Oakmont
Installing solar on new Habitat for Humanity homes with GRID Alternatives
AER workshop on High Performance Enclosures
Halloween at the Redwood Empire Foodbank
AER workshop on Water, Energy, and Time Efficient How Water Systems for New Homes
Rebuild Green Expo in Santa Rosa
SCP class on Solar and Batteries
RiseUp fence raising event for Larkfield and Mark West Springs
AER workshop on Residential Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC)
Mendocino County Library DIY Toolkit workshop