About Us

Our Mission

AECA's primary mission is simple and straight-forward:

  • Advocate for fair, just, reasonable, stable and competitive energy rates and policies
  • Encourage energy efficiency and renewable energy development
  • Educate the farming and food processing community on energy options and programs

Our track record

AECA was formed more than 20 years ago by California farmers and ranchers concerned about rapidly rising energy rates and constantly changing rate structures and price signals. AECA has been highly successful to date. A few of our major accomplishments include:

  • Effectively advocating for fair and reasonable rates before the California Public Utilities Commission. To date, AECA's rate setting efforts have saved agricultural and food processing customers over $1 billion.
  • Creation of diesel-to-electric conversion programs (AG-ICE) to encourage voluntary deployment of cleaner and less expensive technologies.
  • Gaining lower-cost agricultural rate eligibility for food processing and fiber processing customers.
  • Creation and expansion of energy programs to encourage deployment of renewable energy by the state's farms and food processing facilities.
  • Leader in the development and expansion of the Self Generation Incentive Program (SGIP), Net-Energy Metering (NEM) and Feed-in-Tariff (FiT) programs to facilitate participation by agricultural enterprises.
  • Passage of the landmark Senate Bill 1122 (Rubio) Bioenergy Incubation Program which provides power purchase contracts for 90 megawatts of small agricultural biogas and biomas projects.

Our ongoing role

Controlling the rising costs of energy continues as our primary goal. There are many state mandated programs and requirements that are rapidly increasing energy costs for California farming and food processing operations compared to the rest of the nation – making our business climate more challenging. Increased reliance on water pumping is also driving energy usage and cost.

If left unchecked, California's already expensive energy rates will continue to rise. According to the California Energy Commission:

  • Electricity rates are projected to increase between 26% and 42% from 2012 to 2020.
  • Natural gas rates are projected to increase between 62% and 77% from 2012 to 2020.

Join us in fighting these unreasonable cost increases and advocating for fair, reasonable and competitive energy rates and policies that protect the food and fiber production industry in California.

AECA members include the state's leading agricultural associations, water agencies, farmers, ranchers, producers and food processors. AECA has approximately 500 individual farming operations and through our member organizations represent the interest of over 40,000 agricultural operations from Redding in the North to San Diego in the South. AECA members share a common concern of ensuring affordable and reliable energy sources throughout California.

AECA member associations include:

  • Western Growers Association
  • California Fresh Fruit Association
  • California Cotton Ginners and Growers Association
  • California Citrus Mutual
  • Agricultural Council of California
  • California Dairies, Inc
  • Western Agricultural Processors Association
  • Milk Producers Council

AECA's directors are leaders in the agricultural and water community and the organization has a talented team of staff and consultants.

Roger Isom- President

Roger has been active in energy and environmental issues for decades. He currently serves as the President and CEO of the California Cotton Ginners and Growers Association (CCGGA) and the Western Agricultural Processors Association (WAPA).

Michael Boccadoro- Executive Director

Michael has been involved in California Energy issues for over 25 years. He has been instrumental in keeping agricultural energy costs in check and in development of renewable energy programs for agricultural operations.

Beth Olhasso- Program Manager

Beth has over five years of experience working on environmental, water resource and energy policy issues in California. She has played a key role in development of energy policy and programs for farm customers.