In 2004 the Truckee-Donner Public Utilities District was not using any renewable energy.
But managers say they saw the need to change with the arrival of state mandates, so they tried to buy renewables at the same price as fossil fuels and they succeeded.
That early start gave the district a pricing advantage according to Steven Poncelet of the TDPUD.
“Other Utilities in California are struggling to achieve that and they are then having to pay a premium for the renewable,” said Poncelet.
Despite the shift to renewables, TDPUD has not increased rates since 2009 and doesn't plan to increase them next year.
Power and water efficiency upgrades and conservation programs have contributed to price stability.
Anthony Andreoni of the California Municipal Utilities Association says the TDPUD is an example for other utilities.
“So certainly congratulations are in order for our member and the agressiveness that they are pursuing those reductions,” he said.