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California Bill Would Mandate 100% Renewable Energy by 2045

CaliforniaBusinesses in California could face what in some cases would be considerable changes in energy procurement if a bill introduced last week in the legislature becomes law.

SB 584, according to UtilityDive, mandates that all of the state’s energy be from renewable sources by 2045. The move to 50 percent renewables, which currently is mandated for 2030, would be moved to 2025. The story says that the bill’s chances are good because democrats control both houses of the assembly and Governor Jerry Brown, also a democrat, is considered a strong supporter of renewable energy.

Commentary in the story says that the Trump administration is expected to be less friendly to such initiatives than the Obama administration was. This, the story suggests, is leading California to be more aggressive.

PVTech pointed out that Los Angeles approved a 100 percent clean energy mandate last year. San Diego and San Francisco have similar laws on the books. The story also says that passage of SB 584 is not seen as inevitable:

Whether the statewide proposal catches on with the rest of the Senate, or provides the foundation for a more detailed bill, is yet to be seen. Whilst ambitious, the new mandate is not unrealistic, given that in Q3 2016, California became the first state ever to add more than 1GW of utility-scale solar in a single quarter. Furthermore, solar created 100,000 jobs in 2016 in California alone, according to the Solar Foundation’s National Solar Job Census.

The precise impact on businesses is impossible to say at this point. Individual organizations may have move toward renewables themselves and won’t be as impacted. Others may have to make more significant changes.

Industry in the Golden State is accustomed to dealing with energy issues. Recent legislation mandates reductions in consumption of electricity by computers and related equipment. The size of the state’s economy is thought likely to make those changes de facto rules elsewhere because manufacturers will adopt them instead of implementing parallel processes. It is possible that an aggressive move into renewables also would have impacts felt outside the state.

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