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California Renewable Energy Standard Raised to 33%, Gov. Brown Hints at 40%

California Governor Jerry Brown yesterday signed into law a mandate requiring utilities get a third of their electricity from renewable resources like solar panels and wind turbines.

The new bill promises to bring certainty to a fast-growing market for solar energy, in particular. With the transition to a new Governor this year, the future of California's renewables portfolio standard was periodically brought into question (see here and here). Without formal legislative action, the standard would have remained stuck at 20 percent rather than the more aggressive 33 percent.

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California Solar Developers Ask For Red Tape Reduction

California solar energy plant developers asked the Renewable Energy Policy Group this past Friday if environmental approval processes could be sped up, since projects are making little to no progress towards their 2010 construction goals--goals that must be reached if the projects are to qualify for specific federal funds. This frustration with the slow pace of approval has become something of a theme with solar development in the southwest and California. Various bills have been proposed that would (a) speed up the approval processes for solar energy plants or (b) at least provide clearer environmental guidelines for plant development to make it easier to predict the success or failure of a project. Developers don't see why separate guidelines need to be established--can't they just use the guidelines in place for other large desert developments? Why is solar so much more complicated?

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The Governator Guns for Solar

Posted by Margaret Collins In Thursday, September 17 2009 under: Schwarzenegger, Executive Order S21-09, RPS, Energy Policy, California Solar

No, California's new Renewable Portfolio Standard legislation didn't pass. Yes, the state is more firmly committed to solar power integration and clean energy than ever.

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Solar Power and State Renewables Standards

A number of U.S. states require electricity providers to derive a minimum percentage of their power from renewable sources by a certain date. Such a requirement is often referred to a renewable portfolio standard, or RPS. Currently, 24 states, plus the District of Columbia have formalized RPSs in place, while five other states have legislated more informal goals aimed at promoting the adoption of renewable power. The Department of Energy provides a useful RPS summary map.

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RES bill introduced in the Senate

Posted by Margaret Collins In Wednesday, February 18 2009 under: Udall, utility, Senate, Congress, New Mexico Solar, RPS, Energy Policy, RES

New Mexico Senator Tom Udall (D) has made a big splash with his first bill: a Renewable Electricity Standard calling for the nation's utilities to draw 25% of their power from renewable sources by the year 2025. The first benchmark would be 6% renewable power by 2012, increasing sharply thereafter.

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