Innovative Cold Storage Enterprises A Super Chill Company Philosophy

Commercial Case Study

Innovative Cold Storage Enterprises, Inc. - San Diego County


Innovative Cold Storage Enterprises, Inc. a/k/a “ICE” is a cold storage service company with a strong dedication to sustainability; so much so that the company uses chemical-free cooling tower water for landscape watering, installed permeable paving to allow rainwater to reach the ground, and even flushes toilets with repurposed refrigerant condensate. Expansion to a second location with 7,500,000 cubic feet of cold storage necessitated a renewable energy solution to keep with the company’s strong sustainability commitment.

Refrigerated storage is a business that relies on energy not to maintain production, but to protect all the products that its 1,850 clients entrust ICE to maintain at proper temperature. ICE needed a reliable solution that could keep products cool or frozen using green energy and also build in a safety net in the instance of a grid power outage..


The groundbreaking company, Innovative Cold Storage Enterprises, had commissioned one of the first large-scale commercial solar projects in San Diego (2009). After a decade of energy production success, it wanted to increase its energy production as well as replace a portion of the existing system due to unfavorable buy-out contract terms. HES Solar was the perfect team to expand the existing solar system with a 2104-panel SunPower rooftop and carport solar array design. HES Solar added additional autonomy and security by tying a 10-battery bank Tesla Energy storage system to the system.

Customer Benefit

“ICE” now operates on over 45% solar energy; the battery system 100% discharges the batteries on well over 300 days each year. This use of stored solar energy from the Tesla Energy storage unit accounts for as much as 70% of renewable energy use during winter months. During summer months the PV system overproduces enough to strongly offset utility costs. This HES Solar solution not only stabilizes and lowers energy costs for the company but holds to the sustainability tenent of Innovative Cold Storage Enterprises. Running the refrigeration units renewable energy provides cost savings that ICE is able to pass on to its customers.

A drone shot of commercial solar panel arrays on a rooftop and carports

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Quick Facts

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Net Energy Metering 3.0 (NEM 3.0) is the incoming law created by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). The new tariffs and fees will impact both residential and commercial solar systems built in California. 

As this notice is posted in November of 2022, the Proposed Decision from the CPUC outlining the proposed NEM 3.0 terms is expected soon. This comes after a year’s delay. Once the new agreement is finalized and passed into law, there will exist a designation of the deadline under which new systems will continue to qualify for NEM 2.0 rates. 

The new NEM 3.0 rates will be designed to lower the value of electricity during the daytime hours, when solar is producing, and increase the value of electricity during the evening hours, when solar homes and businesses purchase electricity. In short, NEM 3.0 will create a “sell low, buy high” proposition to new solar system owners. 

To Californians looking to install a solar system on their home or commercial building, the NEM 2.0 rates will be preferred. As of this post, the solar industry does not know the details of how different the NEM 3.0 rates will be from the NEM 2.0 rates. 

Please use the HES Solar website as a resource to learn more, and please take our offer to speak with an HES Solar Energy Consultant at no obligation.

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Robert Laverty

Senior Energy Consultant, Residential

Robert Laverty joined the HES team in the summer of 2018, bringing his ten years of solar design experience and his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Puget Sound with him. Robert is dedicated to finding solutions to help families produce and store electricity in order to reduce their reliance on grid power as well as help reduce their household’s carbon footprint. Robert’s experience as a newspaper editor as well as his involvement with the sustainability-focused Rocky Mountain Institute drives him to constantly seek out innovative ways to meet energy needs through renewable resources as well as helps him share those ideas with Southern California homeowners. When not at work or volunteering time with his church or community, Robert spends time with his wife and two sons or pursues his passion of fly fishing.
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