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Renewable Electricity is in Bloom in California

May 3, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange
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Renewables in CA

While California never quite got a winter, we can still acknowledge that spring is here. From where I sit in Sacramento, spring means getting out and enjoying the blue skies, a last bit of cool air before a brutal summer, and oh yes, the legislature heating up on important questions of California’s energy future.[read more]

While Most Wait for the Federal Government, California May Have Just Broken the Methane Puzzle Wide Open

May 1, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange

California and Methane Risk and Policy

Methane from oil and gas operations is a serious climate risk, but also a ripe opportunity to make a huge dent in overall greenhouse emissions. This past week, the state of California took a big, and long-awaited, step to address the challenge.[read more]

California's Major Residential Rate Reform: A Mixed Bag for Solar Economics

April 30, 2015 by Jeff St. John

Reform and Solar Impacts

California utility regulators issued a proposal to reform the complex, multi-tiered rate structures for residential customers of the state’s big three investor-owned utilities. And as solar advocates expected, it contains some good news and some bad news for the economics of customer-owned net-metered solar PV systems.[read more]

Building Codes That Work

April 23, 2015 by Maximilian Auffhammer
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Green Buildings and Regulation

New building codes are a significant part of projected emissions reduction goals in the United States, all over Europe, in Japan, and elsewhere as well. The question of course is, whether building codes actually cause such decreases in energy consumption.[read more]

Biofuels, Hunger, and Climate: Fixing California's LCFS Analysis

April 6, 2015 by Jonathan Lewis

Despite their shortcomings, it’s too soon to give up on biofuel LCAs. Lifecycle GHG emission models can help characterize the GHG performance of biofuels in general terms, but only if policymakers at California ARB and other agencies ensure that LCAs steer us toward, rather than away from, our policy objectives.[read more]

Major Steps Toward a 21st Century Electricity System in New York, California

April 2, 2015 by Ryan Katofsky

State Electrical System Reform

Now well into 2015, momentum is building around the country to create a 21st Century electricity system. Progress is being made on the regulatory front and with implementation, as various states move to modernize their grids, update their regulatory frameworks, and address future challenges.[read more]

The Path Toward a Low-Carbon California

April 2, 2015 by Energy Innovation LLC

Carbon Mitigation in California

California risks falling short of the pace necessary to meet the its target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050. Fortunately, policymakers are putting in place the next phase of energy policies that would maintain the state’s leadership for decades to come.[read more]

In Praise of Cleaner-Burning Gasoline

March 31, 2015 by Severin Borenstein

Gasoline and Environmental Risk

California has seen a price spike over the last month that at one point drove pump prices to a dollar above the rest of the country. We’re used to paying a bit more for gas here — due to higher taxes and the cleaner-burning fuel used only in California — but the difference is usually around 30-40 cents.[read more]

Energy Efficiency 2.0: A New Definition Underway in California

March 25, 2015 by Christine Hertzog

What does energy efficiency mean to you? In states like California that employ aggressive energy efficiency policies and standards from widget to building envelope, it’s been a successful strategy to reduce per capita energy consumption.[read more]

How Should We Design Government Policies to Stimulate Innovation?

March 25, 2015 by Lucas Davis

Policy Supporting Innovation

 

Innovation needs to take center stage not only in Washington DC, but also here in California, which produces only 1% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. So the success or failure of California’s climate policies hinges on stimulating innovation that can be exported to the rest of the world.[read more]

California's Demand Response 2.0 Creates New Competitive Markets

March 16, 2015 by Jeff St. John

We covered how California utility regulators and grid operators are rewriting the rules for demand response, the practice of reducing energy use in homes and businesses to meet grid needs. Now the fruits of these efforts are emerging: two proposals would radically change the way demand response works in the state.[read more]

Here Comes the Sun: How California is Bringing More Renewables to the Grid

March 14, 2015 by EDF Energy Exchange
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California Renewables Grid Integration

Not content with setting a Renewable Portfolio Standard that ends at 2020, Governor Jerry Brown and state legislators are pushing for California to get 50 percent of its energy from renewable resources by 2030. California must build a system that is largely based on renewable electricity, like wind and solar.[read more]

California PUC Aims to Replace Shuttered Nuclear and Gas With 'Preferred Resources'

March 13, 2015 by Eric Wesoff
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The California Public Utilities Commission made a proposed decision on Friday that denied approval of a new gas-fired power plant in the coastal Southern California city of Carlsbad. Approval for the plant was denied because the utility did not sufficiently consider "preferred resources."[read more]

The New (and Improved) Electric Grid in California

March 6, 2015 by NRDC Switchboard
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California Electric Grid

 

During the day, California routinely gets more than 15 percent of its power needs from solar energy, which produces no harmful air pollution. That's enormously helpful for our environment and public health. It also means that the people who operate the grid don't need to find as much electricity elsewhere.[read more]

Petroleum Refinery Outage in California Highlights Markets' Quick Price Reaction

March 3, 2015 by U.S. EIA: Today in Energy

Refinery Outages and Price Reactions

On February 18, an explosion and fire occurred at ExxonMobil's refinery in Torrance, California. The Torrance refinery is an important source of gasoline and distillate fuel oil supply for Southern California. Unplanned refinery outages can have noticeable effects on liquid fuel markets.[read more]