Brown Signs Law Setting Goal of 100 Percent Clean Electricity by 2045

Brown Signs Law Setting Goal of 100 Percent Clean Electricity by 2045

Brown Signs Law Setting Goal of 100 Percent Clean Electricity by 2045

"There is no understating the importance of this measure", Governor Jerry Brown said, and vowed to honour the 2015 Paris climate deal.

Brown is hosting a summit in San Francisco starting Wednesday that he hopes will "wake up the national leaders" on the need to confront climate change. Jerry Brown signed the landmark Senate Bill 100 (SB 100) today, setting the Golden State on a path to generate 100 percent of its electricity from renewable and zero-carbon sources such as solar and wind by 2045.

"It will not be easy", Brown tweeted after signing Senate Bill 100 and a related executive order. An effort he pushed has died the past two years in the Legislature, with critics arguing California shouldn't be part of a grid with states that rely on coal.

Not everyone is satisfied with Gov.

Utility and oil companies resisted the legislation, arguing that it would lead to electricity price hikes for consumers and have negligible impact on cutting Carbon dioxide emissions. They're pushing him to create a moratorium on new oil wells in the state. "But it must be done", Brown said.

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Last year, California joined Washington state and NY to form the U.S. Climate Alliance, which now includes 17 U.S. states committed to achieving the goals of the Paris climate agreement and meeting or exceeding the targets of the Clean Power Plan crafted by the Obama administration's Environmental Protection Agency.

Some business groups are also critical of the legislation, saying it sets impossible targets and could increase electric bills. Carbon neutrality refers to achieving net zero carbon emissions by balancing a measured amount of carbon released with an equivalent amount sequestered or offset, or buying enough carbon credits to make up the difference. The summit aims to secure commitments from cities, states, provinces, countries and corporations to reduce greenhouse gases that the world's leading scientific organizations say are trapping heat in the atmosphere and warming the planet.

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. Still, the order does try to hedge against overly disruptive solutions to the economy, stating "All policies and programs undertaken to achieve carbon neutrality shall seek to improve air quality and support the health and economic resiliency of urban and rural communities, particularly low-income and disadvantaged communities".

"California is showing the world that a transition to 100 percent clean energy is within reach and it will continue to drive the transition away from fossil fuels - and it is doing this while the federal government abandons clean energy".

Emissions are falling. Since 2004, as renewable energy has boomed, California's greenhouse gas emissions have dropped by 13 percent, even as the economy has grown by 26 percent over the same time. The measure, sponsored by state Senator Kevin De Leon, requires the state to get 60 percent of its power from renewable energy by 2030, up from a target of 50 percent by the same deadline. That's 10 percent higher than the current mandate.

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