Side image of California Energy Commission's building

About the California Energy Commission

As the state’s primary energy policy and planning agency, the California Energy Commission plays a critical role in creating the energy system of the future—one that is clean, is modern, and ensures the fifth largest economy in the world continues to thrive.

San Francisco night

Advancing State Energy Policy

California has some of the most ambitious climate and energy goals in the world. Achieving these goals while ensuring the state’s energy systems remain accessible, reliable, safe, and affordable requires thoughtful planning and the identification of policy solutions to some of today’s toughest challenges.

Solar Panels

Achieving Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency means doing more with less. By leveraging technology to meet consumer needs while using less energy, California is reducing the need for new electricity generation, which reduces air pollution and saves consumers money.

Solar Thermal Array in the desert

Investing in Energy Innovation

Technology innovation in California is needed to create a modern energy system that can power the world’s fifth largest economy in ways that are cleaner, safer, more affordable, and more reliable.

Windmills and high-power transmission lines along hillside

Developing Renewable Energy

California is recognized worldwide for transitioning its electricity system to one that relies increasingly on clean sources of energy, such as solar, wind, and geothermal. California has even established a 100 percent zero-carbon energy-planning goal by 2045.

Electric Zero Emission Bus

Transforming Transportation

California’s transportation sector accounts for about 50 percent of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions, nearly 80 percent of nitrogen oxide pollution, and 90 percent of diesel particulate matter pollution. Transitioning the transportation sector to low-carbon fuels and zero- and near-zero-emission technologies is critical to achieving climate change goals and clean air standards.

Charging Station

Overseeing Energy Infrastructure

A key part of creating a safe and reliable electric system is ensuring that the review of proposed thermal power plants includes an assessment of the project design, an analysis of the related potential adverse environmental impacts, and a process for public input. The California Energy Commission is responsible for conducting this review and ensuring that these permitted power plants comply with all laws and conditions of approval.

Solar panels and wind turbines

Preparing for Energy Emergencies

The California Energy Commission, in its role as the state’s primary energy policy and planning agency, supports emergency response efforts by serving as a central source of credible and timely information on emergency impacts to the state’s energy infrastructure.

California's Drought: Impact on Hydroelectricity - PDF
The most widely recognized aspect of the water-energy relationship is hydroelectric generation. A vast system of reservoirs and dams, pumped storage, and run-of-river facilities helps provide reliable electric service to consumers throughout California. 

California's Energy Governing Institutions - PDF
California is the most populous state in the nation and one of the world's top economies. To ensure that the state's energy is safe, affordable, reliable, and clean, California has established three governing institutions: the California Energy Commission, the California Public Utilities Commission, and the California Independent System Operator.

Proposition 39: The California Clean Energy Jobs Act Fact Sheet - PDF
The Proposition 39 K-12 Program provides grant funds for energy projects – energy efficiency upgrades and clean energy generation – at schools within a local educational agency.

Appliance Energy Efficiency Standards Fact Sheet - PDF
The Energy Commission develops, implements, and enforces California's Appliance Energy Efficiency Standards and labeling requirements.

Building Energy Efficiency Standards Fact Sheet - PDF
The Energy Commission adopts Building Energy Efficiency Standards that help reduce the energy consumption of a building. Adopted every three years, these standards serve as a foundational part of California's long-term strategy for meeting energy demand, resource conservation, and environmental stewardship. 

Western Energy Planning Fact Sheet - PDF
California is part of a larger integrated electricity system in the western United States called the Western Interconnection, connecting electric utilities from 14 western states, parts of Canada, and Northern Mexico to operate at a synchronized frequency.

Zero-Emission Vehicles in California Fact Sheet - PDF
To reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution from the transportation sector, California's state agencies, including the Energy Commission, have developed a series of policies and actions to encourage the use of zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs).

California’s 2030 Climate Commitments and E3 Study
Along with the California Air Resources Board, the California Public Utilities Commission, and the California Independent System Operator, the Energy Commission commissioned E3 to evaluate the feasibility and cost of a range of potential 2030 targets along the way to the state's goal of reducing GHG emissions to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.