Policy Committee‎ > ‎2005 Meetings‎ > ‎

10.27 Approved Minutes








Thursday, October 27, 2005, 5:00 P.M.

City Hall, Room 421

One Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place

San Francisco, CA 94102



COMMITTEE MEMBERS:  Commissioners Johanna Wald (Chair); Arlene Rodriguez and Christina Desser


Commission Secretary:  Monica Fish





Public comment will be taken before the Commission takes action on any item.




The meeting was called to order at 5:05 p.m.  Present:  Commissioners Desser, Rodriguez and Wald.


2.   ACTION:  Adoption of Minutes of the June 23, 2005 Regular Meeting. (Explanatory Document:  Draft Minutes of the June 23, 2005 Regular Meeting)**


Upon motion by Commissioner Desser and second by Commissioner Rodriguez the June 23, 2005 Minutes were unanimously adopted.  There was no public comment at this time. 


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


Public Comment:  Dr. Ahimsa Sumchai, Environmental Sciences Editor, San Francisco Bayview Newspaper (1) expressed ownership, environmental impact, financial, and permit approval process concerns with the proposal by Trans Bay Cable LLC to install a 400 MW high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission line beneath the bay, between the cities of Pittsburg and San Francisco, (2) urged the Commission to provide input into the Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) scheduled for January 2006 and confirm that this project meets public needs, and (3) urged the Commission to review the October 5, 2005 memorandum from the Port of San Francisco Executive Director to Members, Port Commission (copy received in Committee).


Committee members and Director Blumenfeld recommended that Babcock & Brown Power Operating Partners, the Port of San Francisco, and Bay Conservation Development Commission make a presentation on this project to the Policy Committee at a future meeting.


Public Comment:  Unidentified Speaker stated that the citing of the converter station is dependent upon the existing distribution and supported the location of the project.


Public Comment:  Unidentified Speaker stated that he had received a notice from the City of Pittsburg about a meeting held yesterday on the electricity transmission line and questioned the City of Pittsburg’s connection with the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) on this project.


Public Comment:  Mr. Ralph Cavanagh, Co-Director, National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) Energy Program spoke on two elements of the City’s climate leadership, (1) support of the City’s membership in the California Climate Registry, and (2) concerns with the City’s decision to join the Chicago Climate Exchange.  His concerns with the Chicago Climate Exchange were:


·         Mr. Cavanagh expressed support of moving toward state, regional, and national mandatory limits on global warming emissions and advised that the Chicago Climate Exchange may be supporting voluntary limits.  He recommended that every effort should be made to pass California Assembly Bill 32 in 2006 to set up the machinery for a cap-and-trade system to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases in California.  Commissioner Wald asked Mr. Cavanagh to make a presentation on the legislation at a Commission on the Environment meeting.


·         The American Electric Power Company, a supporter of voluntary limits, is the largest emitter of carbon dioxide of any company in the United States and also the principle buyer of emissions in the Chicago Climate Exchange.  The President of the Exchange is also a member of the twelve-member board of the American Electric Power Company. 


Mr. Cavanagh advised the Department (1) to make sure that when selling carbon dioxide allowances into the Exchange, to assure that it not be purchased by American Electric Power Company, (2) to retire the allowances if not earning any revenues from the Exchange, (3) to continue membership with the California Climate Registry, and (4) to ask the Chicago Climate Exchange questions and proceed with caution before joining. 


Public Comment:  Unidentified Speaker asked (1) how this process would evaluate more efficient electrical power generators, and (2) if the process encourages the use of co-generation economically.  Ms. Melissa Capria, Department of the Environment Climate Action Coordinator, clarified that both the Chicago Climate Exchange and the Climate Registry applies to emissions, but not efficiencies.


Mr. Cal Broomhead, Department of the Environment Energy Manager, advised that Ms. Capria would be preparing a report on the pros and cons of membership in the California Climate Registry and the Chicago Climate Exchange.  A report will be scheduled for the November Policy Committee meeting. 


4.   REPORT AND DISCUSSION:  Report on the Energy Program Proposal for 2006-08.  (Explanatory Documents discussed in Committee Meeting:  CCSF-PG&E 2006-2008 Partnership Program)

               SPONSOR:  Jared Blumenfeld, Director

SPEAKERS:  Department of the Environment Staff:  Cal Broomhead, Energy Manager

and Ann Kelly, Energy Efficiency Coordinator


Mr. Cal Broomhead, Energy Manager advised the Committee that the Department is approaching the conclusion of the Peak Energy Program, a partnership  with Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E) for the past 2 ½ years.  Incentive programs will continue through December 31, 2005 and non-incentive related services and program elements will continue until June 30, 2006. 


It was reported that on January 1, 2006, all statewide utilities are initiating three-year programs that would include a local government partnership program.  PG&E set aside 11 ½ million dollars for a City and County of San Francisco (CCSF) partnership program for 2006-08.  Mr. Broomhead and Ms. Kelly described the Department’s program proposal to PG&E called the “CCSF-PG&E 2006-08 Partnership Program” discussing program overviews, markets served, partners and their roles, coordination with delivery channels, additional program features, and goals and deliverables for program elements that include:


·         Commercial Deemed and Calculated Savings Program Element

·         Mass Market—Small Business Direct Install Program Element

·         Mass Market—Multifamily Direct Install and Single Family Program Elements


PG&E would be responding to the Department of the Environment’s proposal in November, and Mr. Broomhead would report back to the Policy Committee on the decision.  The Committee was asked for additional program recommendations, and a discussion was held about the possibility of running a strategic program in conjunction with the Department of Public Health called “Healthy Homes.”


(Item 6 was heard before Item 5)


5.   DISCUSSION:  United Nations World Environment Day Accords—Prioritizing three key actions for adoption by the Commission on the Environment (Explanatory Document handed out in Committee: Urban Environmental Accords Revie
SPONSOR:  Commissioner Johanna Wald; SPEAKER:  Jared Blumenfeld, Director


Director Blumenfeld reported that the Urban Environmental Accords sets out twenty-one actions in seven key areas in order to move towards sustainability.  This item was continued to the November Policy Committee meeting so that Committee members could review and prioritize three accords to work on for the next year to recommend to the Commission for adoption.


Public Comment:  Ms. Nancy Wuerfel, member, Open Space Committee, Recreation and Park Department (1) referenced “Action 10, Urban Nature” of the Environmental Accords which reads “Ensure that there is an accessible public park or recreational open space within half-a-kilometer of every city resident by 2015.”  She reported that the Recreation and Park Department has a problem with accepting ownership of open-space land because of budgetary issues in maintaining the land.  She recommended that land be preserved as open space by another jurisdiction; and (2) asked for the timeline for building a compressed natural gas (CNG) station in Golden Gate Park. 


Director Blumenfeld reported that the CNG station has not been built at this time due to steel/cement costs and because Ford discontinued its Crown Victoria CNG program.  The money has been raised, approvals have been received, Recreation and Park Department and the Commission agreed, and the Department of Public Works is in charge of building the station.  It was reported that the station would be just for Recreation and Park Department usage.


Public Comment:  Unidentified speaker reported that China has compressed natural gas scooters.        


6.  DISCUSSION:  Programmatic and legislative schedule for Policy Committee one-year calendar (Explanatory Document handed out in Committee:  Programmatic and Legislative Schedule).

       SPONSOR:  Commissioner Johanna Wald

                                          SPEAKER:  Jared Blumenfeld, Director


This item was continued to the November Policy Committee meeting.  Director Blumenfeld asked the Committee to review the programmatic and legislative schedule provided by staff in order to recommend a one-year Policy Committee meeting calendar for discussion at the next meeting.

7.      INFORMATION: New Business: Requests were made to reschedule the November 22 Commission meeting and November 24 Planning Committee meetings.  The Commission Secretary would report back to the Commissioners with feasible meeting dates.      

8.      FUTURE AGENDA ITEMS:  Proposed future agenda items that were discussed included: (1) presentation on proposal by Trans Bay Cable LLC to install an electricity transmission line; (2) report on the California Climate Registry and the Chicago Climate Exchange; (3) prioritizing three Urban Environmental Accords for adoption by the Commission (continued to the November meeting); and (4) programmatic and legislative schedule for Policy Committee one-year calendar (continued to the November meeting).   

9.      PUBLIC COMMENTS:  Members of the public may address the Committee on matters that are within the Committee’s jurisdiction and are not on today’s agenda.  No public comment was heard at this time. 

10.  ADJOURNMENT:  The meeting adjourned at 7:30 p.m.


** Copies of explanatory documents are available at (1) the Commission’s office, 11 Grove Street, San Francisco, California between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., (2) on the Commission’s website;  (3) upon request to the Commission Secretary, at telephone number 415-355-3709, or (4) via e-mail at [email protected].



Monica Fish, Commission Secretary

TEL:  (415) 355-3709

FAX: (415) 554-6393


Adopted:  November 9, 2005

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