The Electric Program Investment Charge

The Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) was founded in 2012 to promote and drive innovation in clean energy. The Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) program was established in 1996 with an aim of supporting energy innovation and development.

The Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC)

  • The Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) was established in 2012 by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). The core purpose of EPIC is to promote and drive innovation and entrepreneurship in clean energy through provision of funding for research aimed at accelerating the realization of generating 100% clean energy in California by 2014.
  • EPIC has four administrators, including California Energy Commission (CEC), San Diego Gas & Electric Company (SDG&E), Southern California Edison (SCE), and Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E).
  • CEC administers 80% of the EPIC funds while PG&E, SCE, and SDG&E administer 10%, 8.2%, and 1.8%, respectively.
  • EPIC’s annual budget of $162 million comes from electric utility bills paid by customers and is collected by the four administrators at levels of 50.1% by PG&E, 41.1% by SCE, and 8.8% by SDG&E.
  • EPIC has three program areas namely applied research and development, market facilitation, and technology demonstration and deployment.
  • Applied research and development program area focuses on funding applied energy science and technology projects with potential benefits to the public. These projects should not have current deployment of private capital.
  • Market facilitation program area focuses on funding market research, workforce deployment, and regulatory permitting and streamlining activities with the objective of dealing with non-price barriers to the adoption of clean technology.
  • Technology demonstration and deployment program area focuses on providing funding support for technology demonstrations in real-world conditions and at real-world scales as a way of displaying emerging innovations and boosting technology commercialization.
  • Between 2012 and 2018, EPIC had provided funding support to over 303 projects totaling to $649,954,922.
  • There is no readily available list of all awardees/beneficiaries of EPIC funding. However, one of the funding opportunities for the EPIC program is CalSEED. The linked spreadsheet provides a list of past awardees/beneficiaries of the CalSEED grant.
  • CalSEED is a small grant program of $24 million whose objective is to help early-stage startups, individuals, and entrepreneurs in California to introduce clean energy concepts into the market.

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