Renewable Energy Legislation Passes In California

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The passage of S.B.2X by the California State Assembly is ‘a major boost’ for jobs, clean energy and the state's economy, says the Independent Energy Producers (IEP). The legislation requires that 33% of the state's energy come from renewable sources by 2020. Previously, the goal was 20% by 2010.

‘This landmark legislation will help put Californians back to work and provide the clean electricity needed to power our economy into the future,’ says Jan Smutny-Jones, executive director of IEP California. ‘The jobs and investment created by [S.B.2X] are a major boost for our economy – and a signal to the nation that California is still the innovative leader when it comes to clean, green energy.’

S.B.2X applies to all electricity retailers in the state – investor-owned utilities (IOUs), municipal utilities and independent sellers. The current 20% standard applies only to IOUs and independent sellers. The California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) expects IOUs will provide 21% of their electricity from renewables this year. Municipal utilities have adopted renewable energy goals.

The PUC must approve renewable energy contracts, and utilities may be granted exemptions if the price of energy or the difficulty of moving it into the state's grid, make the cost excessive.

Over 45 energy, labor, environmental and health organizations joined IEP in supporting S.B.2X, including the California Wind Energy Association; American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees; Sierra Club California; and American Lung Association of California.

S.B.2X is a key component of the Clean Energy Jobs Initiative that the Democratic leadership in the Legislature has pledged to move to the desk of Gov. Jerry Brown, D-Calif., as part of the current special session on the budget and economic development.

SOURCES: Independent Energy Producers, Office of Sen. Joe Simitian

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