Solar Cells

About Us

Our mission is to  advocate for policies and programs that reflect reliable, high-quality, environmentally-responsible, and competitively-priced energy and power in an open and transparent market-based system.

Our Team

Tim McRae, Vice President, Energy -


Tim McRae is the Silicon Valley Leadership Group’s Vice President, Energy.   He helps the Leadership Group’s members and partners define and carry out energy-related policy, programs, and events.  Issue areas include reliability, quality, environmental sensitivity, innovation, customer choice, competitive pricing, and responsibilities include lobbying, fundraising, and managing events.  Prior to Tim joining the Leadership Group in 2013, he developed commercial wind projects for Aries Power and Industrial, worked on sustainability and energy efficiency for PG&E, and climate change policy for the British government.

A graduate of Georgetown University and UC Davis School of Law, Tim serves on the San Jose Parks Foundation Board, the Acterra Business Environmental Awards Advisory Committee and on SPUR’s “Fossil Free Bay Area” energy task force.   He also volunteers in the “Reading Partners” program at Robert F. Kennedy elementary school in San Jose.

Heidi Sickler, Sr. Associate, Energy and Environment -

Heidi Sickler is the Leadership Group’s Energy and Environment Senior Associate. She leads the Leadership Group’s advocacy on Electric Vehicle adoption.

Heidi worked on Capitol Hill, serving U.S. Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT), Senator Mark Dayton (D-MN), and Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (CA-46), and in the City of Los Angeles, supporting Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, and in the City of San José, supporting Councilmember Raul Peralez.  A native Spanish speaker, Heidi taught Spanish language in classrooms across Los Angeles. Heidi has won both the Livable Streets Government Worker of the Year Award and the American Planning Association Hard Won Victory Award, both for efforts to improve transportation in Los Angeles. Heidi holds a M.Ed. from Harvard University and a B.A. from Carleton College.

Energy Committee

Committee Co-Chairs
Our 2017 – 2019 Priority Issues
  • Clean Energy Supply
  • Promote financing and deployment of clean energy and emerging technologies, to the benefit of Silicon Valley Leadership Group members.
  • Executive Champion: Nancy Pfund, Founder and Managing Partner, DBL Investors
  • Staff Lead: Tim McRae, VP, Energy
  • Grid Modernization, Reliability, and Distributed Energy Resources 
  • Promote and facilitate integration of technologies that support a safer, smarter, more reliable gas and electric grid.
  • Executive Champion: Buck Koonce, Sr. Adviser, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
  • Staff Lead: Tim McRae, VP, Energy
  • Demand-Side Solutions 
  • Promote energy efficiency, demand response, and reduce energy waste
  • Executive Champion: Mona Tierney-Lloyd, Sr. Director, Western Regulatory Affairs, EnerNOC
  • Staff Lead: Tim McRae, VP, Energy

Are you a member of our Energy Committee? To access our Energy Committee Only webpage, click here.

Participating Member Companies
  • Alta Devices
  • Bloom Energy
  • ChargePoint
  • EnerNOC
  • Infinera
  • Lawrence Berkeley Nat’l Lab
  • Lawrence Livermore Nat’l Lab
  • NetApp
  • Pacific Gas & Electric
  • Proterra
  • San Jose State University
  • SunPower
  • Tesla
  • Verdafero
  • xOverTime

2017 Legislation



  • SB 71 (Weiner): SB 71 would require that solar heating or solar PV systems be installed on new construction subject to Title 24 of the California Code of Regulation.
  • SB 700 (Weiner): SB 700 would direct the California Public Utilities Commission to provide rebates to customers of Investor-Owned Utilities for the installation of customer-sited energy storage systems.
  • AB 36 (Nazarian): AB 36 would expand the eligibility of the Net Energy Metering Fuel Cell program to apply to all technologies that meet the emissions standards established for that program.
  • AB 398 (E. Garcia): AB 398 would extend the cap-and-trade program through 2030.
  • AB 523 (Reyes): AB 523 would require the California Energy Commission to allocate at least 25% of the money appropriated from the EPIC fund toward technology demonstration and deployment at sites located in disadvantaged communities, and 10% of the money in the fund toward technology demonstration and deployment at sites located in, or benefiting, low-income communities.
  • AB 546 (Chiu): AB 546 would require that cities and counties accept electronic submissions of permit applications for advanced energy installations and create a California Energy Storage Permitting Guidebook.
  • AB 1414 (Friedman): AB 1414 would seek to revise and extend existing law regarding solar permit fees charged by local jurisdictions for residential and commercial solar PV and solar thermal projects to ensure reasonable and consistent statewide fees reflecting the costs to issue such permits, while incentivizing jurisdictions to streamline and standardize permit requirements.
  • AB 1073 (E. Garcia): AB 1073 would extend, until 2020, a requirement that 20% of the funding for the Clean Truck Program be allocated to the early commercial deployment of zero- and near-zero emission vehicles.


Support in Concept


  • AB 1184 (Ting): AB 1184 would require the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to identify $3 billion for a new up-front, point-of-sale electric vehicle rebate to deploy 1.5 million electric vehicles by 2025.   

Support in Concept motion asks for:

  • Clarification that AB 1184 include funding and/or does not crowd out funding for:
    • Zero- and low-carbon transportation incentive programs
    • Non-light duty low- and zero-emission incentive program
    • Hydrogen fuel cell vehicle
  • Removal of the 2023 sunset date for the Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) rebate and tying the phase-down of incentives to market penetration
  • Directing CARB to identify what is fair for evaluating incentives for PHEVs and pure zero emission vehicles.


Support if Amended


  • SB 100 (De León): SB 100 would mandate a 50% RPS by 2026 and 60% RPS by 2030 and set a planning goal of zero-carbon electricity by 2045.
    • Support if Amended motions asks for: Exclude the use of offsets and out of state renewable energy credits from eligibility to satisfy the goals established in subsection 453.43(a). Direct state agencies involved to consider reliability, cost, and safety in the program.


  • SB 356 (Skinner): SB 356 would open access to grid level data held by Investor Owned Utilities and address customer data issues.
    • Support if Amended motion asks for: Balance cybersecurity and customer privacy concerns with data transparency interests.


  • AB 1293 (Irwin): AB 1293 would require that Publicly Owned Utilities make their data and analyses publicly available and, upon request, to electronically transfer their data and analyses to the requester in a digital, machine-readable format.
    • Support if Amended motion asks for: Balance cybersecurity and customer privacy concerns with data transparency interests.


Past Wins


  • SB 350 (2015) —  Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act of 2015


  • Net Energy Metering (NEM):

NEM supports a robust rooftop solar industry in California that has grown into a global leader and helps homeowners, schools, and businesses across the state save billions of dollars in electric bills and reduces their greenhouse gas emissions. Many of our member companies, representing a substantial subset of end users, have installed solar systems that utilize NEM.

In California, NEM has leveraged more than $10 billion in private investment, reduced electricity demand, and helped support more than 54,000 in-state jobs. Rooftop solar is vital to continue growing our burgeoning clean energy economy both locally and across the state, and to meeting the state’s ambitious clean energy goals.

The Leadership Group has weighed-in in support of this program at the state legislature and California Public Utilities Commission, and will continue to support this important program.

In The News

07/17/17 Mercury News OpEd: Cap and Trade advocate: Business supports anti-pollution, pro-clean tech bill 

07/11/17 San Francisco Chronicle: Brown’s cap-and-trade bill exposes fault lines of state politics

07/11/17 Highland Community News: California Business Leaders Respond to Bills Advancing State’s Cap-and-Trade Program

07/10/17 Mercury News: Jerry Brown, lawmakers announce California climate deal

04/19/17 Capitol Weekly OpEd: In defense of cap and trade 

12/13/16 Sacramento Bee OpEd: How energy-efficient computers can save money and help save the planet 

07/06/16 Mercury News OpEd: McRae: Cap and trade auction doesn’t negate California’s economic growth 

10/18/14 Sacramento Bee OpEd: AB 32 shfits California toward better economy


Silicon Valley Leadership Group Fact Sheets