Articles filed under Energy Policy from California

Schwarzenegger vetoes energy bills

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed a pair of renewable-energy bills late Sunday, saying that an alternative plan he is pursuing to boost the state's percentage of renewable power sold to 33% is preferable. ...Unlike the vetoed legislation, the new rules won't limit the amount of renewable power California utilities can buy from out-of-state facilities that are too far away to deliver the electricity in real time. Mr. Schwarzenegger agreed ...that restricting out-of-state renewable energy purchases would make it nearly impossible for utilities to meet the 2020 deadline.
12 Oct 2009

Alternate-energy scramble on across West

In Utah, state officials are fielding various combinations of energy proposals, a list that includes solar and geothermal installations and an energy storage project ...Scores of projects - some speculative, others well-funded and a few quirky - have surfaced with energy companies eager to take advantage of loan guarantees and tax breaks being promoted by President Barack Obama.
28 Sep 2009

The Greenhouse Dilemma

Governor Schwarzenegger's plan to reduce greenhouse gases could fail to reach its goals - or it could expand the use of coal power in California. ...When Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed an executive order last week to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, he made national headlines ...But a closer examination of Schwarzenegger's order reveals that the hype surrounding it may have been overblown.
23 Sep 2009

Push toward energy independence

Alternative energy has become quite fashionable, especially in electricity generation. Wind, solar, tides, dairies. If you can work "carbon emissions" or "global warming" into the press release, you've got a winner. Electricity is the lifeblood of our America. Are you ready to turn back the clock on your standard of living? Until the technology improves on alternative electric energy sources, they all have to be considered experimental and supplementary. Here's why.
18 Sep 2009

California renewables push could drive up prices in Oregon

California's push to supersize its renewable energy standards could drive electricity rates higher for Northwest consumers, strain the west's transmission and hydroelectric systems, and create a host of thorny policy issues. The California Assembly passed a pair of bills Friday to create the nation's most aggressive renewable energy mandate. It would require utilities to meet one third of their customers' needs with green energy such as wind, solar and geothermal by 2020.
15 Sep 2009

Schwarzenegger to veto renewable energy bills

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's office said Saturday that he would veto legislation requiring a third of California's energy to come from renewable sources by 2020, choosing instead to mandate the change through an executive order. The Democratic bills that passed the state Legislature just before the end of the legislative session Friday would have set up the most aggressive renewable energy standards in the nation. But they also sought to limit the amount of energy from sources such as wind, solar and geothermal that could come from out-of-state.
12 Sep 2009

California lawmakers adopt landmark renewable energy plan

California lawmakers approved one of the world's most aggressive renewable-energy mandates early Saturday in legislation that would require the state's utilities to use renewable sources like the sun and wind to generate a third of the power they sell by 2020. The proposal is a centerpiece of the state's 2006 plan to combat climate change, which has broad public support. And although it's more aggressive than a similar federal proposal pending in Congress, the legislation could influence decisions in Washington.
11 Sep 2009

Renewable-power fight at crossroads

Two bills pending in the Legislature would force the state's electrical utilities to get 33 percent of their power from renewable sources by 2020, up from the current requirement of 20 percent by the end of 2010. ...But the details involved in reaching such an ambitious goal have touched off a complex debate, one that will probably reach its climax in the next week when the Assembly votes on one of the bills.
4 Sep 2009

Out-of-state power projects criticized; Utilities trying to meet mandate for renewables

In May, 62 wind turbines started sending electricity from southern Washington state to the Turlock Irrigation District. Next year, a nearby wind project in northern Oregon will start supplying the Modesto Irrigation District. ...Outsourcing renewable power irks some activists. "It totally takes the focus off building our green-tech economy," said Laura Wisland, a clean energy analyst with the Union of Concerned Scientists in Berkeley.
30 Aug 2009

California renewable energy goals: The devil is in the implementation

At the State Capitol, boosting the use of solar power, wind generators and other renewable energy sources is seen as a boon for both the environment and the economy in electricity-hungry California. But with two weeks left in the legislative session, Democrats are hustling to fulfill a commitment they made to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to pass a law to require all utilities to get a third of their power from "green" sources by 2020.
29 Aug 2009

Utilities, groups at odds over sources for renewable energy

California's electric utilities have accepted that they'll be required to get a third of their power from renewable sources by 2020. Now, they are battling environmental and labor groups over where it's going to come from. Utilities say they can't meet the 2020 goal unless the state allows them relatively free access to renewable power generated far beyond the state's borders, in places like Wyoming and British Columbia.
24 Aug 2009

Washington wind power blowing south

A Washington wind farm that its developer calls “one of the premier wind sites in the Pacific Northwest” has been sold to a group of California utilities. ...Why is California buying made-in-Washington wind power? California has much higher electricity rates than Washington, so the wind power premium is proportionately cheaper.
22 Jul 2009

State green power plan will cost consumers billions

Sharon Reid and her husband, Dewitt, a retired Marine major, pay $170 in a typical month ---- and some months more than $230 ---- to cool and light their 2,000-square-foot, tri-level home in Vista. Without making any changes in lifestyle, their electricity bill is likely to increase by $45 a month on average as California overhauls its power grid and tries to shift the source of one-third of its electricity from fossil fuels to green sources by 2020.
12 Jul 2009

TANC sends a mixed message

There is near-universal agreement that meeting the state's goals for reducing fossil fuels will require major new lines between California's cities and the places where the wind blows strongest and the sun shines steadiest. Is this power line the right project? No, but it won't be the last attempt. ...We might need new lines, but they need to built in the right way, in the right place, with the least impact to residents and our natural environment.
5 Jul 2009

Oversight sought of publicly-owned utilities

Prompted by outcry over a proposal to place a power transmission project through Solano and neighboring counties, Sen. Lois Wolk, D-Solano, has introduced legislation to close a loophole exempting local, publicly owned utilities from state oversight. ...Existing law requires that any person proposing to construct an electric transmission line must first obtain a certification from the Commission. However, local publicly owned electric utilities do not currently fall under this law, and thus lack oversight.
3 Jul 2009

State's renewable-energy focus risks power shortages

California officials are beginning to worry that the state's focus on transitioning to renewable-energy sources could lead to power shortages in the near term. The state has been so keen to develop renewables that relatively few conventional power generators, such as gas-fired plants, have been built lately. That risks a possible energy shortfall in certain places if the economy rebounds any time soon.
3 Jul 2009

Renewable power will cost consumers more

California's push for renewable power could prove costly to consumers. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's plan to get one-third of the state's electricity from renewable sources by 2020 could cost $115 billion in new infrastructure, according to a report released Friday by the California Public Utilities Commission. Last year, a similar report from the commission estimated the cost at $60 billion.
13 Jun 2009

Out-of-State wind and solar generation could be excluded from participating in California's renewable portfolio standard

The intent to prevent California's utilities from using out-of-state wind and solar generation to meet the new 33% RPS requirement is not obvious from the provisions of the bills. The exclusion results from a change in the requirements concerning the "delivery" of generation to California. Under California's current RPS legislation, in order to qualify as an eligible renewable energy resource such that California's utilities can count that generation against their RPS requirements, out-of-state generators are required to deliver the electricity to California simultaneous with its generation.
24 Apr 2009
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