For Immediate Release: December 17, 2009
Media Contact: Susanne Garfield - 916-654-4989

MEDIA ADVISORY

Energy Policy Focuses on Energy Reliability and Renewable Resources
2009 Integrated Energy Policy Report Sets State's Energy Policy

The California Energy Commission unanimously adopted the 2009 Integrated Energy Policy Report (2009 IEPR). The report recommends strategies for reducing the state's greenhouse gas emissions while maintaining reliable, efficient, and affordable energy supplies for the state's citizens.

"California's energy policy future requires a clear, well defined foundation that understands the energy issues and provides a strategy for energy programs," said Commissioner Jeffrey Byron, Presiding Member of the 2009 IEPR Committee. "This report is the compass that will help make certain the Governor's energy vision can be implemented."

The 2009 IEPR noted that although California is experiencing reduced demand for electricity, natural gas, and transportation fuels as a result of the economic recession, energy demand is expected to grow over time as the economy recovers.

Assembly Bill 32, which established the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020, continues to be a driving force for many of the state's energy policies and programs, including a continued push for energy efficiency, using renewable sources of energy, and reducing the state's use of fossil fuels for both electricity generation and transportation.

Energy reliability remains a key focus of the 2009 IEPR, which states that reaching California's environmental and reliability goals will require improved coordination between the state's major energy agencies. The report recommends building on a common vision between the energy agencies to meet the state's energy needs with expanded energy efficiency and demand response standards, increased renewable generation, a coordinated and open transmission planning process, research and development into better and more efficient energy technologies, and increased use of alternative and renewable transportation fuels.

Top priority recommendations in the 2009 IEPR range from improving building and appliance standards to help reach the goal of zero energy new buildings over the next two decades to removing barriers to achieving higher levels of renewable energy and supporting efforts to develop the "smart grid."

Integrated planning for California's future energy needs will help ensure reliability and environmental responsibility, and can also help stimulate the state's economy. The report states, "It is essential that the state's energy sectors be flexible enough to respond to future fluctuations in the economy, and that the state continue to develop and adopt the 'green' technologies that are critical for long-term reliability and economic growth." Overall, the report recommends that energy agencies work toward "a unified vision that translates into a blueprint of specific goals and objectives, which will provide a foundation for in-depth planning."

The 2009 Integrated Energy Policy Report is available on the Energy Commission's website at: http://www.energy.ca.gov/2009_energypolicy/index.html

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