03.22 Approved Minutes

  

City and County of San Francisco

Commission on the Environment

MEETING

 

APPROVED MINUTES

Tuesday, March 22, 2005, 5:00 p.m.

City Hall, Room 416

 

 

1.      CALL TO ORDER AND ROLL CALL:  The meeting was called to order at 5:12 p.m.  Present:  Commissioners Nia Crowder, Angelo King (5:15 p.m.), Alan Mok, Paul Pelosi, and Arlene Rodriguez (5:35 p.m.).  Excused/Absent:  Commissioners Christina Desser and Johanna Wald.

 

NOTE:  Agenda items were heard out of order.

 

3.      PUBLIC COMMENTS:  Members of the public may address the Commission on matters that are within the Commission’s jurisdiction and are not on today’s agenda.

 

There was no public comment at this time

 

    6.  INFORMATION:  Precautionary Principle Background and Update

Sponsors:  Director Jared Blumenfeld and Debbie Raphael, Toxic Reduction Program Manager, Department of the Environment

 

Director Blumenfeld gave background information and an update on the Precautionary Principle.  A discussion was held on the following topics:

 

§         The goal of the Precautionary Principle—transforming the way we make decisions

§         The groups/entities/decision makers involved in the Precautionary Principle

§         The Public Process

§         Precautionary Principle and Risk and Science

§         The Precautionary Approach:  Risk vs. Alternatives Assessments

§         Five Tenets of the San Francisco Ordinance

§         Public Participation Goals

§         San Francisco Implementation

 

Debbie Raphael, Toxic Reduction Program Manager discussed implementation of the Precautionary Purchasing Ordinance.  A discussion was held on the following topics:

 

§         San Francisco Environment Code Chapter 1 that defines the five tenets to implementing the Precautionary Principle

§         San Francisco Environment Code Chapter 2 of the Environment Code, the Precautionary Purchasing Ordinance--how the five tenets would be incorporated into the City purchasing process

§         Alternatives to hazardous products

§         Precautionary Principle to be introduced to the Board of Supervisors in April

§         Role of the Commission

§         Public Involvement/Hearings

§         The Precautionary Principle and Decision Makers’ Process

§         Program Structure

§         Department Exemption Process

§         Next Step:  Criteria Selection, Public Process, and Advisory Group

 

Public comment from Neil Gendel, Director, Healthy Children Organizing Project and member of Bay Area Working Group on the Precautionary Principle speaking in favor of the Precautionary Principle Purchasing Ordinance.  Discussed the mission of the Healthy Children Organizing Project and protecting children’s exposure to toxic chemicals such as lead and mercury. Noted that products purchased by the City are full of toxins and may affect the health of employees and their families. 

 

Public comment from Karen Pierce, member, Bay Area Working Group on the Precautionary Principle, on the Working Group’s goal of making the precautionary approach the culture of San Francisco.

 

2.      ACTION:  Adoption of Minutes of the February 24, 2005 Special Meeting.

 

Upon motion By Commissioner Pelosi and second by Commissioner Mok, the Minutes of the February 24, 2005 Special Meeting were unanimously adopted. 

 

4.      ACTION:  Consideration and adoption of Resolution No. 003-05-COE Duke Energy Settlement for Approval of Plan to Implement Solar Energy Project.

 

Resolution approving the expenditure of $250,000 of the DUKE ENERGY SETTLEMENT FOR THE INSTALLATION OF SOLAR ENERGY SYSTEMS IN THE BAYVIEW AND POTRERO HILL NEIGHBORHOODS OF SAN FRANCISCO.

Sponsor:  Director Jared Blumenfeld

Staff: Anne Eng and Raymond Manion, Department of the Environment

 

Anne Eng, Environmental Justice Program Manager gave background information on the $250,000 Duke Energy Settlement allocated for solar energy systems in San Francisco neighborhoods impacted by electric power generation.  The plan is to transfer the $250,000 to the Environmental Justice program to issue a Request for Proposal and award environmental justice grants to non-profit organizations to install or partner with licensed contractors to install the solar systems.  Project goals for solar installations were identified as described in the “Joint Proposal of SF Public Utilities Commission and SF Department of the Environment” Draft dated March 10, 2005.  A “Clean Power Estimator” of costs and benefits for large systems for non-profit buildings and small systems for low-income housing was distributed and discussed.

 

Public comment from Karen Pierce, representing the Bay View Advocates (President) and the ACE Program in support of the Department of the Environment and the passage of the Resolution.  Discussed the Bayview district converting to solar energy and public education.

 

Upon motion By Commissioner Pelosi and second by Commissioner King, Resolution No. 003-05-COE “Duke Energy Settlement for Approval of Plan to Implement Solar Energy Project” was unanimously approved.

 

5.      INFORMATION:  Report on Community Choice Aggregation.   

Sponsor:  Commissioner Nia Crowder

Speaker:  San Francisco Public Utilities Commission Representative

 

Barbara Hale, Assistant General Manager for Power, San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) gave a report on Community Choice Aggregation (CCA).  The following topics were discussed:

 

§         Definition of Local Government Community Choice Aggregation and services the program would provide

§         PG&E’s Role Under CCA

§         CCA Role as a Power Provider

§         CCA in California and in San Francisco Background and Provisions

§          Electric Service in SF Currently

§         Community Choice Aggregation benefits for San Francisco

§         Potential Generation (CCA) vs. Transmission and Distribution (PG&E) Revenues in San Francisco

§         Draft Implementation Plan

 

Sean Casey, SFPUC discussed the factors affecting CCA’s costs and potential success.  Topics discussed are as follows:

 

§         Customer Characteristics

§         CCA Supplier Performance and Customer Responsibility Surcharge (CRS)

§         CCA Short-Term Customer Rates Higher than PG&E’s; CCA Long-Term Rates are Economic

§         Potential CCA Project Administration and Staffing

§         California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) Rulemaking

§         CCA and Renewable Energy

§         Prop H Municipal Bonds

§         Customer Opt-out Rules of CCA

§         Next Steps:  Board of Supervisors and CCA Task Force to determine alternatives, risks and opportunities.

 

Public comment from Karen Pierce asking if the proposed CT’s would lead to San Francisco getting out of the responsibility of providing energy generation in the City.  Ms. Hale answered that the CT would be a contractual relationship between the City of San Francisco and the Department of Water Resources.  Those power plants would not be part of the CCA portfolio and would be separate public policy choices.

 

Public comment from Debbie Raphael, Department of the Environment requesting information on the factors contributing to the differences between PG&E’s reliability of energy choices vs. the City’s. Mr. Casey replied that most power outages would occur on the distribution and transmission side than on the generation side.

 

Items 7 and 11 were heard together.

 

  1. INFORMATION:  Update on World Environment Day (WED)

Sponsor:  Director Jared Blumenfeld

 

Director Blumenfeld reported that at the May 21 press conference, Mayor Newsom along with former Mayor Brown and Senator Feinstein highlighted World Environment Day.  The former Mayors Agnos, Brown, Feinstein, Jordan, and current Mayor Newsom would be the costs of the Committee for WED.  The calendar of events was discussed.  Specifics would be discussed at the Commission Retreat on April 8.

 

11.  INFORMATION: Director’s Report

         Jared Blumenfeld, Director, Department of the Environment gave updates on SFE administrative and programmatic operations relating to Budget Planning, Strategic Planning, Climate Division, Outreach and Education Division, Environmental Justice Division, Zero Waste, Toxics Reduction Program, and the Urban Forestry Division.   Main points that were discussed are listed in the Director’s Monthly Report dated March 2005. 

 

Commissioner King reported that the Bayview Opera House, the site originally selected to host the Bayview Farmers Market, has considerations that have to be worked out with the City before staging the event there.  

 

 

 

 

 

8.      INFORMATION: Hydrogen and Renewable Energy Committee Report

         Commissioner/President Crowder highlighted the March 21, 2005 Special Meeting reporting that (1) Cal Broomhead, Energy Manager, Department of the Environment gave a summary of the Community Aggregation Presentation by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission at the San Francisco Local Agency Formation Commission meeting on March 11; (2) a presentation on the November 2004 Green Cities Economic Opportunity Symposium was given; and (3) the structure of the Hydrogen and Renewable Energy Committee would be discussed at the Commission Retreat.

 

      10. INFORMATION: Policy Committee Report

         Commissioner/President Crowder announced that Commissioner Wald would highlight the February 24, 2005 Policy Committee meeting at the April 8 Commission Retreat.

 

9.      INFORMATION: Operations Committee Report

         The January 19, 2005 meeting was cancelled due to a lack of quorum.  Commissioner Rodriguez announced that the next meeting is scheduled for April 20, 2005, at 4:00 p.m. at the Department of the Environment, Ground Floor Conference Room.

 

12.  INFORMATION: Commission Secretary’s Report

Monica Fish, Commission Secretary

         Communications & Correspondence 

 

Statement of Economic Interests (Form 700) and Sunshine Declaration Forms are due to the Commission Secretary before March 30 or to the Ethics Commission by April 1.

 

         Update on Pending City Legislation

 

The Bag Fee Nexus Study scheduled completion date to the Department of the Environment is April 22, 2005.

 

13.   INFORMATION: President’s Announcements

 

No announcement was made at this time.

 

14.  INFORMATION: New Business

 

An agenda for the April 8 Commission Retreat would be posted on the Commission website by March 23rd.

 

15.  PUBLIC COMMENTS: Members of the public may address the Commission on matters that are within the Commission’s jurisdiction and are not on today’s agenda.

 

No public comment was heard at this time.

 

16.  ADJOURNMENT:  The meeting adjourned at 7:00 p.m.

 

** Copies of explanatory documents are available at the Commission office, 11 Grove Street, San Francisco, California between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., or when possible, on the Commission’s meeting website or upon request to the Commission Secretary, at telephone number 415-355-3709, or via e-mail at Monica.Fish@sfgov.org.

 

 

Respectfully submitted by,

 

Monica Fish, Commission Secretary

 

Adopted:  April 8, 2005

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