California is moving towards 100 percent clean energy with the passage of state Senate Bill 100 (SB100). The groundbreaking legislation would move the state toward 100 percent carbon-free electric generation by 2045 and boost its renewable energy portfolio to 60 percent by 2030. The bill is now one step closer to Gov. Jerry Brown’s (D) desk for approval into law.
“There is no other issue but climate,” said bill coauthor and Assembly member Laura Friedman (D-Glendale) before the vote. “Let’s show the world, who is watching, what we are able to achieve in California.”
The California Assembly passed the bill today, Aug. 29, following the state Senate’s approval, in a move that’s been widely hailed by clean energy advocates. The bill, which has been debated for 2 years, now returns to the Senate for a vote on concurrence. It was previously passed by the state Senate in 2017. The bill faced opposition largely from Republican member of the state’s Congress.
"The California Legislature’s bold move to advance legislation that requires 100 percent clean power demonstrates that massive advances in clean energy indeed make a carbon-free power grid a true possibility,” stated Abigail Ross Hopper CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association. “As we await final confirmation in the Senate, this bill will lead to significant investment and jobs creation in California, and elsewhere in America. We urge Governor Brown to sign this legislation as soon as it hits his desk.”
Many organizations advocated for the legislation, which came together as the CA100 coalition. A coalition of clean energy advocates, environmental organizations, union representatives, religious leaders and more. The coalition said it generated more than 70,000 contacts with Assembly members in support of SB100.
“CEJA applauds Senator de León and California for leading the nation with this critical transformative and equitable energy policy. SB 100 will transition our state away from fossil fuels that have disproportionately impacted the most disadvantaged communities and communities of color. The bill charts a pathway for the public health, economic, and job benefits of local renewable energy to reach communities that need it the most” said Gladys Limón, executive director of the California Environmental Justice Alliance.
“We are already seeing the impacts of climate change. Our state is burning, our seas are rising and our air quality is getting worse. We need to take steps now to stave off climate change before it’s too late. SB100 is a step in the right direction,” said Dan Jacobson, Director of Environment California.
“When the world’s 5th largest economy votes to go 100 percent clean, there’s no room left for the naysayers to say it can’t be done,” said Adam Browning, Vote Solar’s executive director.
Still, there’s work to be done before California can make the historic legislation a reality. Hopper observed: “California must begin taking steps now to deploy renewable energy on a wide scale. That’s why we are asking lawmakers to also pass AB 893, which would require utilities to ramp up procurement of renewable resources. Without serious near-term action, ambitious long-term goals will be hard to reach. Furthermore, AB 813, legislation to create a regional electricity market that includes California and neighboring states will help accelerate renewable energy deployment in California and other areas of the West.”
California already is proving that is can move towards renewable energy quickly whilst growing its economy and reducing emissions. Earlier this year it found that its economy has grown 26 percent while cutting its emissions by 13 percent since their peak in 2004, bringing them below 1990 levels. The state had a goal of reducing emissions to that level by 2020.Tweet