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SoCalREN's Core Services for Public Agencies

SoCalREN Energy Efficiency Project Delivery Program

SoCalREN makes it easier for public agencies to take action to save energy. Our free services include high-level technical assistance, objective third-party expertise, access to project funding and financing and project management for all stages of an energy efficiency project, all at no cost. Learn more about our services below.

Public Agency Program Services

Energy Consumption Benchmarking

The SoCalREN Public Agency Programs offer a suite of energy analysis services and tools to empower agencies to make informed decisions about their energy management. These tools compare agency-owned assets such as buildings and streetlights to highlight energy-intensive infrastructure with opportunities for cost-saving energy efficiency projects. To inform portfolio-wide energy analysis, our services and tools include a Comparative Energy Analysis Report and ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager® assistance.

Our Comparative Energy Analysis (CEA) report provides an agency-wide snapshot of building, streetlight, pumping and exterior lighting energy consumption and costs. It helps to flag issues and identify opportunities for energy efficiency improvements by highlighting the highest energy users.

ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager is an online energy management tool developed by the EPA that allows building managers to track and assess energy use across their portfolio of buildings (learn more here). Although this tool can provide valuable insights, it can be challenging to set up an account and begin using it. SoCalREN can help your agency fulfill AB802 benchmarking requirements, monitor building energy performance, and establish a record of agency facilities for ENERGY STAR building certification.

Technical support, including facility energy audits, identifying energy efficiency improvement measures, and energy efficiency performance specifications

SoCalREN provides an experienced energy engineering team to work with your staff and provide technical assistance for your project. We develop an energy audit to produce a detailed list of recommended energy efficiency measures, along with a detailed financial analysis of the energy savings and costs of the recommendations to help guide your decision-making. We work with you to select the final package of measures to be installed by a quality mechanical or electrical contractor. SoCalREN Project Manager and engineer prepare performance-based technical specifications and a scope of work for the selected measures.

Projects supported by SoCalREN include:

  • Lighting, including interior and exterior LEDs, occupancy sensors, controls, and daylighting
  • Mechanical, including performance improvements such as heat pumps, variable frequency drives, energy monitoring and control systems, and retrocommissioning, for mechanical equipment such as heating,ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) and pool pumps
  • Street lighting, including inventory analysis, photometric analysis, and technical oversight
  • Water, including pump optimization, well rehabilitation, load shift measures, and retrocommissioning
  • Wastewater, including plant improvements like blower replacement and optimization, mixer replacement, aeration/diffuser, sensor-based control systems, and chemical treatment systems
Project management and other staff support throughout your energy efficiency project

Whether your agency is considering a whole building retrofit or a single measure such as street lighting, SoCalREN is your one stop solution. Each enrolled agency is matched with a SoCalREN Project Manager, who serves as your point person to access our suite of programs and services. Many agencies think of their SoCalREN Project Managers as “one of our energy partners” and “part of the team.”

Our Project Managers provide start-to-finish support to guide you from facility audits all the way through construction completion. Our job is to make your job easier—we can assist with staff reports, documentation for project approval, and more to complete projects and accomplish your goals.

Analysis of financing options, financial advisory services, and assistance with rebate and incentive applications

Energy retrofits save money and resources in the long run, but financing them can be a big challenge for public agencies. SoCalREN offers a suite of free services to overcome this challenge and move projects to completion, including:

  • Tailored solutions -  SoCalREN can help identify financing solutions that best fit your agency’s specific needs and circumstances.
  • Paperwork made easy - once your agency decides how to finance your energy efficiency project, SoCalREN can assist your staff with completing financing and incentive applications for the project.
  • Financial advisor - SoCalREN provides access to financial advisory services through PFM Financial Advisors (PFMFA). PFMFA is available on request, at no charge, to work directly with your agency to ensure proper communication of financial options, structures and obligations.
  • Exclusive access to project funding and financing options - For on-bill financing or other options that pay out after construction completion, our energy efficiency Revolving Savings Fund can help bridge the gap while other funding is being secured. Agencies can also apply for our exclusive SoCalREN cash incentives. SoCalREN offers Energy Project Lease Financing with flexible terms and low interest rates for energy efficiency, water conservation and renewable energy projects.

SoCalREN is your objective third party resource for financing support—as a ratepayer funded program, we have no financial stake in your decisions. Our mission is to support public agencies to increase energy efficiency. Our success is your success!

Proposal and construction support, including procurement guidance, performance specification support, construction management support, and third party objective review

The slow procurement process for construction services through the traditional RFP/bid approach is a common barrier for many agencies to get projects started. SoCalREN’s simplified procurement provides project support from start to finish, bringing speed and efficiency to the construction procurement process.

Our Simplified Procurement option through Sourcewell (formerly NJPA) helps public agencies get to construction faster since they can access a pool of pre-competitively bid contractors. Sourcewell’s ezIQC®️ is the smart, easy way to buy construction services at competitive prices. Take advantage of contracts that have already been competitively awarded and access local contractors for increased speed and efficiency. Becoming a Sourcewell member is easy and can be done online at no cost, no obligation, and no liability. Many agencies are already members!

Regardless of the procurement option your agency chooses, SoCalREN’s support on performance specifications will ensure communications with your contractor will be clear and that the project you’ve developed on paper is what gets implemented. We also provide recommendations for contract language specific to energy efficiency projects—nuances that may not be part of standard templates but are invaluable for smooth project implementation and securing utility incentives. SoCalREN’s technical performance specifications ensure that the design and performance intent of your project is not lost or derailed in construction and that upgrades are installed and commissioned for lasting performance.

Network services to help agencies build energy expertise and learn through peer-to-peer networking

SoCalREN is not only your agency’s guide through energy efficiency projects, but we are also here to help you tap into the SoCalREN network to learn from peers and build energy expertise. Our network services include:

  • Development of project case studies
  • Network-exclusive educational webinars on energy efficiency topics
  • Peer-to-peer networking and best practice sharing with other SoCalREN-enrolled public agencies
  • Support building internal buy-in for energy efficiency projects at your agency by communicating project benefits at council presentations and alleviating staff capacity 


  • Significant energy and cost savings from completed energy efficiency projects. Energy savings from projects completed with SoCalREN not only reduce waste, but free up resources to better serve your agency’s constituents.
  • As a ratepayer funded program, we have no financial stake in your agency’s decisions. We serve as a public agency’s trusted partner by offering unbiased, objective third party expertise to guide agencies transparently through energy efficiency projects.
  • We offer custom project management services from start to finish. All of our services are available throughout your project, or, just select customized services based on your agency’s specific needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

How is SoCalREN different from programs offered by the utilities?

SoCalREN complements other energy conservation programs, helping enrolled agencies reach their goals. SoCalREN staff works closely with utility representatives to coordinate offerings and services and avoid duplication of efforts.

Why are agencies joining SoCalREN? What does the future of SoCalREN look like?   

Agencies are joining SoCalREN so they can lead their communities by taking bold action to complete energy efficiency projects, and in turn, serve their communities with shared benefits such as improved illumination, greater reliability, reduced energy costs and reduced greenhouse gas emissions— ultimately creating a healthier community. The CPUC recently approved SoCalREN’s latest business plan, carrying the program through 2025.

Who qualifies, and how do agencies sign up?    

Over 700 cities, counties, water agencies, school districts, special districts, community colleges, universities, and state and federal government facilities served by investor-owned utilities (IOUs) throughout Southern California are eligible. Enrollment is simple and entails an engagement meeting with the interested agency and utility partners, and signing of SoCalREN enrollment form. The form is non-binding and designates an agency “Energy Champion” to work alongside a SoCalREN Project Manager to complete energy efficiency projects. Complete our interest form or email us at to get started.

Learn about our other services