Santa Barbara County is moving forward with a plan to give residents and businesses the option of choosing sustainable energy when picking a power provider.
The Bay Area counties of Marin, Sonoma and San Francisco already offer this option, as does the City of Landcaster in Southern California.
It's called Community Choice Energy and San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties are jointly looking at bringing it to the Central Coast.
Last week, the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors voted to set aside money for planning the program should the process get that far.
Angie Hacker, Division Chief for the Energy and Sustainability Initiative, told KCBX a study is underway to look at power usage and trends along the Central Coast and what kind of supply scenarios would be needed to meet demand.
"... we're looking at ... can we archive comparable rates with the incumbent utilities, PG&E and SoCal Edison," said Hacker.
Hacker said in areas where Community Choice Energy is already an option, providers say—in some cases—the sustainable supply is actually cheaper than more traditional sources.
The Phase One study could be complete for the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors to consider this fall.