California Assembly Passes Bill Requiring All Electricity from Clean Energy by 2045

Aug. 29, 2018
California came closer to securing 100 percent of its electricity from clean sources yesterday with passage of Senate Bill 100 by the Assembly.

California came closer to securing 100 percent of its electricity from clean sources yesterday with passage of Senate Bill 100 by the Assembly.

The bill now has won ‘yes’ votes from both branches of the state legislature; 44-33 in the Assembly and 25-13 in the Senate in May.

Next SB 100 goes back to the Senate to reconcile some minor changes before being delivered to Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk for his signature.

If the legislation makes it through the final steps – which it’s expected to do – California will require retail electricity suppliers to secure all of their inventory from renewables or zero emissions sources by 2045.

The requirement applies to investor-owned and public utilities, as well as energy providers and community aggregators. The bill defines ‘renewable’ as technologies that use biomass, solar thermal, photovoltaic, wind, geothermal, fuel cells with renewable fuels, small hydroelectric generation of 30 MW or less, digester gas, municipal solid waste conversion, landfill gas, ocean wave, ocean thermal, or tidal current.

Hawaii approved a similar bill three years ago. So while California would not be the first state with a 100 percent requirement, the legislation is nonetheless historic, given the state’s size and connection to the North American grid.

Yesterday’s vote won immediate praise from environmental organizations. Environment America said it will press for other states to pursue similar clean energy goals, noting bills in the works in Massachusetts and Pennsylvania.

“No matter what part of the country you live in, nor your political affiliation, renewable energy makes sense for the future — and now. That’s why cities from San Diego in the West, to Georgetown, Texas, to Orlando in the East are forging paths to go 100 percent renewable. California and Hawaii may be the first states to take this big step, but they won’t be the last,” said Doug Phelps, the chairman of Environment America. Environment California is one of 29 state affiliates of Environment America.

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About the Author

Elisa Wood | Editor-in-Chief

Elisa Wood is an award-winning writer and editor who specializes in the energy industry. She is chief editor and co-founder of Microgrid Knowledge and serves as co-host of the publication’s popular conference series. She also co-founded RealEnergyWriters.com, where she continues to lead a team of energy writers who produce content for energy companies and advocacy organizations.

She has been writing about energy for more than two decades and is published widely. Her work can be found in prominent energy business journals as well as mainstream publications. She has been quoted by NPR, the Wall Street Journal and other notable media outlets.

“For an especially readable voice in the industry, the most consistent interpreter across these years has been the energy journalist Elisa Wood, whose Microgrid Knowledge (and conference) has aggregated more stories better than any other feed of its time,” wrote Malcolm McCullough, in the book, Downtime on the Microgrid, published by MIT Press in 2020.

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