For Immediate Release: February 20, 2019
SACRAMENTO - Calling for the next frontier of energy planning and policy, the California Energy Commission today approved the 2018 Integrated Energy Policy Report. The report highlights California's past successes but focuses attention on how a state with nearly 40 million people will drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change.
In 2018, renewable energy provided about 34 percent of the electricity used to serve the state. While significant progress has been made, there is more work to be done, especially in light of California's Fourth Climate Change Assessment. It found Californians must prepare for a future punctuated by severe wildfires, rising sea levels and extreme weather.
The policy report highlights the need to decarbonize buildings, double energy efficiency savings and bolster the state's leadership in combating climate change.
“While efforts have been made to electrify transportation, the next frontier is zero-emission buildings,” said Energy Commission Chair Robert B. Weisenmiller. “California’s energy efficiency standards have saved consumers well over $100 billion. To reduce the need for new power plants and transmission lines, the state must help Californians double their energy efficiency savings.”
The report acknowledges the partnerships that California has forged with nations and subnational governments to share information and strategies to solve a global issue.
The Energy Commission also approved key investments to encourage emerging technologies to help food processing plants work toward a low-carbon future. More than a dozen projects received grant funds in Central Valley towns, such as Kingsburg, Woodland, Livingston and Tulare. The projects will reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions associated with food production.
The Energy Commission approved a new member to the Disadvantaged Communities Advisory Group, which advises the Energy Commission and the California Public Utilities Commission to ensure clean energy advances reach all Californians. The latest member is Joseph Williams, founder of Youth Action Project, a nonprofit youth services agency based in San Bernardino.
More details are available in the business meeting agenda.
# # #
About the California Energy Commission
The California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency. It has seven core responsibilities: advancing state energy policy, encouraging energy efficiency, certifying thermal power plants, investing in energy innovation, developing renewable energy, transforming transportation, and preparing for energy emergencies.