Climate

New California Law Mandates 100% Clean Energy by 2045

On September 10, Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation that commits California to running 100% on clean power by 2045.

California, the world’s fifth largest economy, now requires that all power in the state must be from clean, renewable sources by 27 years from now.

The bill which made this happen, SB100, also requires that the state must meet a target of powering 60% of the state’s electrical needs with clean energy by 2030. That moves up the state’s previous clean energy goal of achieving 50% clean power by 2030.

California state Senator Kevin de Léon authored the bill.

SB100 was signed just before the Global Action Summit happening in San Francisco this week. That summit, which is championed by Governor Jerry Brown himself, opens September 12. It will be bringing in climate activists from all over the world, other governors, mayors from around the world, former Vice President Al Gore, AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka and Green for All CEO Vien Truong.

While the new law was heralded by many for its stark contrast with the pro-fossil fuel industry Trump administration, others were skeptical that Governor Brown’s separate Task Force on Climate would be sufficiently independent from those who caused the climate crisis. The activist alliance It Takes Roots staged its own climate rally. In a call-to-action for that summit, the group said that programs Brown has backed such as “carbon trading markets and other perverse subsidies to oil, gas, and other polluting corporations only perpetuates climate change”, and also just continues “the same corporate agenda” as in the past.

 

With the signing of the bill and pressures from these kinds of activist groups, in California at least the momentum toward a revolution in clean energy is well on its way. If the Governor heeds the call to keep the pressure on all aspects of managing greenhouse gas emissions in the state, California could become a model for other states and perhaps even other nations in how to make this possible.