Sustainability and Environment Division

Resource Conservation (Energy) Program

The Resource Conservation (Energy) Program provides for renewable energy development, energy efficiency, and strategic energy planning. The City of Carpinteria is committed to providing equitable, clean resilient power to the community. This Program includes the implementation of community choice energy, strategic energy planning, and energy efficiency for residents and businesses.

In 2019, the City of Carpinteria received the Platinum Level Beacon Spotlight Award in Agency Energy Savings from the Institute for Local Government for attaining 36-percent energy savings.  To learn more about the Beacon Spotlight Award and the Institute for Local Government, click here.

Community Choice Energy

Community Choice Energy (CCE), also referred to as Community Choice Aggregation, enables local governments to leverage the purchasing power of their residents, businesses, and governmental entities to purchase or generate power for their communities. By allowing local governments to pool the electricity demand of their communities,  CCE’s can offer power with higher renewable content and lower greenhouse gas emissions while also offering more choices at competitive prices to traditional utilities.

In December 2019, the City of Carpinteria formally joined Central Coast Community Energy (formerly Monterey Bay Community Power), a not-for-profit agency established by local communities to source carbon-free electricity. Community enrollment will begin in October 2021. To learn more about Community Choice Energy, click here.

Strategic Energy Plan

Due to its location at the end of the distribution lines for Southern California Edison (SCE), the City of Carpinteria and surrounding communities have experienced grid reliability and resiliency challenges. To bolster the dependability of the local electrical grid and meet local clean energy and economic development goals, the City worked with the County of Santa Barbara and City of Goleta to develop a regional strategic energy plan. The City of Santa Barbara created a similar strategic energy plan, and the south coast agencies held regional workshops to develop comprehensive plans to address the region’s energy needs.

The City Council formally adopted the City of Carpinteria Strategic Energy Plan (SEP) in July 2019.

Implementation of the  SEP includes encouraging energy efficiency and renewable energy through incentives, grant funding, and education. The City recently developed the Energy Efficiency Guide for Residents, which offers tips to reduce energy consumption and save money, as well as information about financial assistance programs.

Solid Waste Program

The Solid Waste Program provides for solid waste collection including handling, disposal, and recycling operations; and street sweeping. The City contracts with E.J. Harrison and Sons, Inc. to provide the solid waste collection. The program also provides for the operation of the ABOP collection center, and the Annual Household Hazardous Waste and Household Goods collection event.

Watershed Management Program

The Watershed Management Program provides for the public outreach and education of storm water quality; tracking of illicit discharges; water quality testing at storm drain outfalls or discharge areas; implementation and enforcement of storm water quality best management practices (BMPs) for development, redevelopment, and City operations; regional coordination; and the overall stewardship of local watersheds by regulating storm water runoff into creeks and salt marsh. The program was created in response to a need to comply with the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Phase II Small Municipal Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit.

Construction Activities

Development projects must prevent sediment and other construction related pollutants from entering the storm drain, as detailed in Carpinteria Municipal Code Chapter 8.10, Watershed Management. The City regulates discharges from construction activities through permits issued by the Community Development Department and through Engineering Permits.

New and Redevelopment

New and redevelopment projects in the City of Carpinteria must be designed to prevent water quality impacts from occurring, not just during construction, but throughout the life of the project.

City staff review project applications to determine mitigating conditions consistent with requirements in Section E.12 of the Statewide NPDES Municipal General Permit  and, for projects located in the NPDES Permit Area, the Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board’s Post-Construction Stormwater Management Requirements.

All regulated projects shall follow the Santa Barbara County Stormwater Technical Guide

The Stormwater Technical Guide explains how to design bioretention for development projects.  Bioretention is the recommended solution for addressing the County’s stormwater requirements.  Additional resources including bioretention construction specifications, plant selection, and a vendor list, can be found on the Central Coast Low Impact Development Initiative  website.

An example Stormwater Control Plan for a commercial project is here; an example Stormwater Control Plan for a residential subdivision is here .