The new law gives California the most far-reaching clean energy goals of any USA state, along with Hawaii, which set a similar target in 2015 of 100 percent carbon-free electricity by 2045. Jerry Brown signed legislation Monday making California the first state to set a goal of 100 percent renewable energy by 2045, despite concerns about increased electricity costs.
"Continuing to drill and frack for oil and gas is not only counterproductive to efforts to meaningfully address climate change - it also poisons frontline communities, including the many people who work for the fossil fuel industry", Greenpeace said in a statement.
Brown signed the measure Monday as he prepares to host a summit in San Francisco of climate change leaders from around the world later this week.
This leaves the door open to carbon-neutral power generated by nuclear reactors, geothermal sources or even natural gas, if CO2 emissions are converted into fuel or syphoned off into secure storage underground, a technology known as carbon capture and storage.
The law requires utilities to source 60 percent of their power from renewable energy by the end of 2030, up from a prior goal of 50 percent.
"This bill and the executive order put California on a path to meet the goals of Paris and beyond".
Critics said they were concerned that the bill would bring higher electricity prices, with opponents including the major utilities, oil interests, as well as the California Farm Bureau Federation and the California Chamber of Commerce, The Mercury News reported.
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Citing the "existential threat of climate change", Gov.
"Climate change is real, it's here, it's deadly, and it's extraordinarily expensive", he said Monday before the signing, extolling the new target's promise of creating tens of thousands of jobs.
"Not here, not now", said Brown.
As of 2017, the a year ago for which complete data is available, the state got 44 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, including 15 percent from large hydroelectric projects, just over 10 percent from solar, and 9 percent from wind power. "California has been doing stuff that the rest of the world is hoping to get to one day". California's renewable energy goal is not as ambitious as Hawaii, which has adopted a 100 percent renewable energy mandate.
California already gets a substantial portion of its electricity from renewable resources. California would need to install more than 200 times as much energy-storage capacity than it has now to make up for the loss of gas plants, according to the Clean Air Task Force, a Boston-based energy-policy nonprofit.
Now, as the state fights a battle against the EPA and the Trump administration to maintain its ability to lead the nation in clean cars, the California Legislature has passed a new plan to radically clean up power plants.
SB 100 has been a two-year project by de León, who will face off against sitting U.S. Sen.