California Commits to 100 Percent Renewable Energy By 2045
14 September, 2018, 11:55 | Author: Patty Aguilar
A new law in California sets a goal of phasing out all fossil fuels from the state's electricity system by the year 2045.
Brown, who signedthe bill amid a huddle of environmental and legislative leaders, also issued an executive order pushing the state to reduce its net output of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere - including from the single largest source, cars and trucks - to zero by the same 2045 deadline. It calls for acceleration of a timeline for use of renewable energy, like solar energy and wind power, and requires that all electricity generated in the state be derived from renewable sources by 2045.
Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill mandating the electricity target on Monday.
Mr. Brown signed the measure over the objections of the state's utility and agricultural sectors, including the Agricultural Council of California, Pacific Gas and Electric, San Diego Gas and Electric, and the Western States Petroleum Association. Also on September 10, Brown also issued an executive order establishing a new target to achieve carbon neutrality by 2045.
The Global Climate Action Summit, which he will host later this week in San Francisco, was organized to encourage regional bodies, such as cities and states, to step up their own efforts to fight climate change where national governments have failed to act. Utilities rely on natural gas plants to meet demand when renewables fall short, particularly in the early evening when the sun sets and people turn on their air conditioners as they get home from work. It also requires that 50 percent of the state's electricity come from renewable energy by 2026 and 60 percent by 2030, up from the current level of 32 percent. He was one of the first three governors to join the U.S. Climate Alliance, a coalition committed to the goals laid out in Paris that has since grown to include 16 states.
"[The bill] is sending a message to California and the world that we are going to meet the Paris agreement and we are going to continue down that path to transition our economy", he told reporters.
This comes as California sees significant effects from climate change.
Citing the "existential threat of climate change", Gov. "But have no illusions", he added, "California and the rest of the world have miles to go before we achieve zero-carbon emissions".
"It will not be easy", Brown tweeted after signing Senate Bill 100 and a related executive order.
The clean energy bill, known as SB 100, passed the legislature last month.
California utilities already get about a third of their energy from renewables, according to the California Energy Commission.
The co-chairs of the San Francisco climate summit include former NY mayor and philanthropist Michael Bloomberg, UN climate chief Patricia Espinosa, and China's top climate official, Xie Zhenhua. Kevin de León, who sponsored the legislation.
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