California

CALIFORNIA

The third largest state (163,694 sq miles) California is home to almost 40 million people. It is gorgeous with a scenic diversity hard to match, from beach to mountain, from wine country to redwood forest, from Yosemite to Lake Tahoe.

As the average annual temperature has risen by approximately 2˚F since the early 20th century (the summer of 2021 being the hottest on record) its climate change vulnerabilities are as diverse as its landscape — suffering increasing heat, droughts, flooding, sea level rise and ever-more frequent and severe wildfires. Its deserts are some of the hottest and driest, while its higher elevations can experience low temperature and heavy snowfall. In the summer, the North Pacific High and jet stream moves northward, keeping storms north of the state and resulting in dry summers. In the winter, this system moves southward, allowing storms to bring precipitation. Because of its large north-south extent, and the several mountain ranges, extreme climate events often affect only a portion of the state.

As America’s most productive agricultural state, the decreased precipitation since 2011 has contributed to near record low levels in the Shasta Reserve and threatened farmland. California has 840 miles of coastland (only bested by Florida and Alaska) and global sea level is projected to rise another 1-4 feet by 2100. These events can damage infrastructure, cause road closures, and overwhelm storm drains, not to mention cause salty water to intrude into the Delta through the San Francisco Bay. 7,618 wildfires, as of September 23, have been recorded in 2021, burning 2,359,871 acres. It is almost unimaginable.

Already in 2006, California had set a goal to reduce the state’s greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 with the Global Warming Solutions Act. In 2016 they committed to a 40% reduction in greenhouse gases below 1990 levels by 2030, and 80% below 1990 levels by 2050.

A key element of California’s climate plan has been the state’s cap-and-trade program, which sets a statewide limit on sources responsible for 85% of California’s greenhouse gas emissions, and establishes a price signal needed to drive long-term investment in cleaner fuels and more efficient use of energy.

In September 2018, Governor Jerry Brown accelerated the state’s goals to carbon neutrality by 2045; to negative emissions thereafter; to clean transportation by reducing petroleum use 45% by 2030; to 5 million electric vehicles by 2030; to 100% clean energy by 2045; to double the rate of energy efficiencies in buildings, and to extend and improve the state’s cap-and-trade program (additionally directing the revenues to greenhouse gas reducing programs which benefit disadvantaged communities).

Calling climate change “a threat to human existence, ”Governor Brown said, weeks before leaving office in 2018, “I’d say California has taken more intelligent action on climate change than any state or province in the Western Hemisphere.”

Data from the California Energy Commission estimated that in 2019, 36% of the state’s retail electricity sales were provided by renewable sources such as solar and wind. When sources of carbon free energy such as large hydroelectric generation and nuclear were included, that number reached 63%.

In March 2021, under Brown’s successor as governor, the California Energy Commission delivered initial analysis of that landmark policy and provided a roadmap detailing the way forward.

Governor Gavin Newsom took early steps in 2019 on climate change but doubled down in September, 2021 when he signed a $15 billion climate package, the largest such investment in state history, which included investments in drought response, forest management and climate risk mitigation. Calling Thursday’s legislation a “landmark bill,” assemblyman Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica) said wildfire prevention and forest health are of critical importance.

An offshore wind bill co-sponsored by Environment California sailed through the California state legislature and was signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom at the same time. AB 525 requires state regulators to set a goal for offshore wind development and moves California another step closer to using the wind off its coasts for clean renewable energy.

California is one of twenty-four states, and Puerto Rico, committed to the U.S. Climate Alliance, which is working to implement policies that advance the goals of the Paris Agreement.

CURRENT NEWS

Column: A climate voters’ guide to the California Senate election

By Sammy Roth 02/15/24
If you live in California and confronting the climate crisis is one of your top priorities, I wouldn’t blame you for not knowing whom to vote for in the U.S. Senate primary election.
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1 million Southern California homes have long-term flash flood risk

By Jonathan Lansner 02/09/24
February’s soaking from twin atmospheric rivers should serve as a reminder that despite Southern California’s legendary great weather, roughly one in five local houses have long-term risks of flash flood damage.
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The unloved L.A. River just prevented a flood disaster. Can more of its water be saved?

By Hayley Smith 02/08/24
As intense atmospheric rivers become more common in a warming world, so too do questions about stormwater capture in Los Angeles. Each year, when rain pours down and the L.A. River roars back to life,…
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Column: Who should pay for climate solutions? The debate is heating up

By Sammy Roth 02/08/24
Under a series of proposals being considered by Gov. Gavin Newsom’s appointees to the Public Utilities Commission, the wealthy would be forced to cough up, in the form of flat fees on their monthly electric…
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Deadly storm pummeling California dumps historic rains over LA

By Andrew Freedman 02/07/24
Heavy rainfall and mountain snow from a "dangerous" atmospheric river slamming Southern California that brought a rare "high risk" of potentially deadly flooding in Los Angeles County this week is set to linger until at…
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California’s Climate Has Come Unmoored

By Ross Andersen 02/07/24
An atmospheric river is exactly what it sounds like: a ribbon of concentrated moisture that can stretch for 1,000 miles through the sky. The one that brought all manner of chaos to Los Angeles this…
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The Fingerprints on Chile’s Fires and California Floods: El Niño and Warming

By Somini Sengupta 02/05/24
Two far-flung corners of the world, known for their temperate climates, are being buffeted by deadly disasters. Wildfires have killed more than 120 people as they swept the forested hillsides of Chile, and record-breaking rains…
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Oil Profits Keep Flowing for Exxon and Chevron

By Collin Eaton and Jenny Strasburg 02/02/24
Exxon Mobil XOM -0.41%decrease; red down pointing triangle and Chevron CVX 0.06%increase; green up pointing triangle banked their second-highest annual profits in a decade last year, riding strong oil demand to solidify their standing among…
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Big Oil Is Doing Great … Except in California

By Matthew Zeitlin 02/02/24
Both Exxon and Chevron reported substantial fourth quarter and full-year 2023 earnings Friday — $36 billion and $21 billion for 2023, respectively, their second highest annual profits ever. Both also called out California, however, once…
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Business coalition sues California over nation-leading climate disclosure laws

By Jordan Wolman 01/30/24
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and American Farm Bureau Federation led a coalition of business organizations in filing a lawsuit on Tuesday aiming to block California’s two landmark corporate climate disclosure laws.
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The US’s largest solar + battery storage project just came online

By Michelle Lewis 01/25/24
The US’s largest solar + battery storage project, Edwards & Sanborn, has come online in Kern County, California.
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Broken chargers, lax oversight: How California’s troubled EV charging stations threaten emission goals

By Russ Mitchell 01/24/24
Doug McCune of Oakland was set to buy an electric car, a Mustang Mach-E. The paperwork was complete; he only needed to sign. Still, he’d heard bad things about the EV public charging system, and…
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PLANS TO ACCELERATE RENEWABLES

Mote Reveals Plans for Biomass-to-Hydrogen Plant in California

09/07/23
As Mote’s hydrogen offtake partner for the second facility in Sacramento, SMUD and Mote have been collaborating on the project development. Upon completion, the facility would produce approximately 21,000 metric tons per yearof carbon-negative hydrogen…

There’s a run on carbon credits. That’s good news for the budget.

08/23/23
California carbon emissions are as valuable as they’ve ever been. Last week’s auction of greenhouse gas permits fetched $35.20 per ton, according to figures released by the state today.

California Climate Action Grants Awarded to 4 UC Davis Projects

08/23/23
As part of a historic partnership between the University of California and the state of California, UC today announced it is awarding over $80 million in climate action grants. The grants will spur implementation of…

Southern California’s ‘water doctor’ pushes for transformation to adapt to climate change

08/23/23
When Adel Hagekhalil speaks about the future of water in Southern California, he often starts by mentioning the three conduits the region depends on to bring water from hundreds of miles away: the Los Angeles…

Data Show Clean Power Increasing, Fossil Fuel Decreasing in California

08/18/23
Data from the California Energy Commission (CEC) highlight California’s continued progress toward building a more resilient grid, achieving 100 percent clean electricity and meeting the state’s carbon neutrality goals.

Once feared, Diablo Canyon now key to California clean energy goals

08/18/23
During a 1981 protest described by Rolling Stone as “the boldest demonstration yet against a nuclear future," singer-songwriter Jackson Browne peacefully crossed a blue line, held out his wrists, and waited for Sheriff Deputy Gary…

Summer has been no sweat for California’s increasingly green energy grid, but the hottest days may still lie ahead

08/16/23
Amid humanity's hottest-ever summer months, California, home of the hottest place on Earth, has enjoyed a relatively cool and stress-free energy supply.

Governor Newsom Announces New Climate Partnership With Australia

08/15/23
California and Australia are working together to fight climate change, focusing on clean energy, clean tech, nature-based solutions, trade, and more – the latest of several international partnerships California has joined to advance climate action.

Gov. Newsom Eyes ‘Hydrogen Economy’ to Support California’s Clean Energy Goal

08/09/23
Gov. Gavin Newsom has called for the development of a hydrogen economy in California to support the state’s renewable energy future.

California and New York Could Miss Their 2030 Climate Targets. Could Permitting Reform Help?

08/04/23
California and New York, two national leaders in the effort to curb global warming, could both miss key 2030 climate targets, according to state officials. It’s a sign that even the states most aggressively pursuing…

California and Chinese Province of Hainan Partner to Fight Climate Change

08/03/23
New MOU between California and the Chinese province of Hainan is the latest of several international partnerships California has spearheaded to fight the climate crisis at a global scale.

California Needs Renewable Energy. Could We Harness the Power of the Ocean?

08/03/23
Waves have been on the mind of Alex Kwok, a Bay Curious listener who grew up in Fremont. When it comes to green energy, he’s seen a lot of solar and wind energy projects here…

Batteries, not blackouts: California’s power grid gets boost from battery energy

07/13/23
As California increases its reliance on renewable energy sources like solar and wind, there's a concern that there may not be enough energy during certain seasons and times of the day to keep the lights…

California secures $67 million to bolster clean energy projects for electric grid

07/10/23
In 2022, 20% of the cars bought in the state were all electric. Now, more than 1.5 million EVs, with the goal of all new cars sold being electric by 2025.

Local Town Could Make California a Green Energy Leader, Professors’ Report Says

06/01/23
A proposed wind energy project in Morro Bay will create 24,000 jobs during construction and 600 annual jobs over the next 25 years, making the small seaside town a leader in U.S. wind energy generation,…

California Inches Toward Renewable Energy Goal, But Still 13th Nationwide

05/31/23
As California forges onward toward its goal of generating 100 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, new data shows that while the state set a new record for clean energy in 2021, it still…

Governor Newsom Updates the Roadmap to California’s Clean Energy Future

05/25/23
Governor Newsom announced the “Building the Electricity Grid of the Future: California’s Clean Energy Transition Plan” today, showing how California will reach our goal of 100% clean electricity by 2045, while keeping costs affordable and…

New Data Shows Growth in California’s Clean Electricity Portfolio and Battery Storage Capacity

05/25/23
The latest data from the California Energy Commission (CEC) shows that in 2021 more than 37 percent of the state’s electricity came from Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS)-eligible sources such as solar and wind, an increase…

California breaks record for renewable electricity

05/25/23
California has hit a new milestone in clean energy as the state continues to move away from fossil fuels in its decades-long effort to reduce air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.

BLM Advances Clean Energy In California

05/19/23
The Bureau of Land Management has approved the Sunlight Storage II Battery Energy Storage System in Riverside County to add up to 300 megawatts for a total 530 megawatts of energy storage capacity provided to…

California’s Green-Fuel Program Gets Too Popular for Its Own Good

05/16/23
A boom in the production of green trucking fuel is punishing renewable-energy producers across the country, thanks to the shifting market for California’s low-carbon fuel credits.

California Continues to Advance Offshore Wind With New Report Detailing Options for Permitting Projects

05/10/23
Today, the California Energy Commission (CEC) adopted a report describing various options for a coordinated, comprehensive and efficient permitting and environmental review process of offshore wind projects off the California coast.

Unprecedented Buildout of Renewables and Transmission Necessary for California Decarbonization

04/25/23
The state must dramatically expand its energy infrastructure and renewable energy sources to satisfy growing demand for electricity while meeting ambitious climate goals, according to California Independent System Operator’s Draft 2022-2023 Transmission Plan.

California Wants to Cover Its Canals With Solar Panels

04/13/23
Gov. Gavin Newsom has resisted declaring the drought to be over. Just this week, a proposal from President Biden raised the possibility of new, painful water cuts for California. And the state seems increasingly trapped…

Clean Power Alliance Celebrates Fifth Anniversary of Serving Southern California Customers

04/04/23
Clean Power Alliance (CPA) is celebrating its fifth anniversary of providing clean renewable energy to residents and businesses throughout Los Angeles and Ventura counties.

How community solar could revolutionize clean energy access in California

04/03/23
Signed into law last year, Assembly Bill 2316 requires the California Public Utilities Commission to assess new community renewable energy program proposals with a focus on serving low-income customers. This will make solar power an…

In California’s Central Valley, the Plan to Build More Solar Faces a Familiar Constraint: The Need for More Power Lines

03/26/23
California’s San Joaquin Valley, a strip of land between the Diablo Range and the Sierra Nevada, accounts for a significant portion of the state’s crop production and agricultural revenues. But with the state facing uncertain…

Homeowners in Bell and Paramount Can Now Fund Renewable Energy and Water Saving Projects, Earthquake Resiliency, HVAC, Through PACE Financing

03/14/23
Homeowners in the Cities of Bell and Paramount, both in Los Angeles County, can now access Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) home improvement financing through industry leader Home Run Financing (HRF), giving area residents new…

Denali commissions solar array at organics facility

03/13/23
Denali, a nationwide provider of organic waste management services, has helped commission the activation of a solar array and integrated microgrid with battery storage capabilities at its Imperial Western Products (IWP) facility in Coachella, California.

Proposed Energy Policy Changes

03/10/23
In this brief, we assess the Governor’s proposed changes to how the state procures and pays for reliable clean energy. The Governor proposes to (1) establish a new central procurement role for the state to…

On with the wind: These floating ‘farms’ key to state’s clean energy future

03/08/23
A new kind of gold rush is underway on the West Coast — but this time, it’s not underground.

Newsom’s climate budget would slash funds that protect coast

03/08/23
Gov. Gavin Newsom’s proposed budget would cut funding for coastal resilience projects almost in half, eliminating more than half a billion dollars of state funds this year that would help protect the coast against rising…

Exxon Mobil threatens to walk away from agreement with troubled refinery project

03/03/23
New complications hit the Rosedale Highway refinery conversion project as partner Exxon Mobil Corp. said this week it will walk away from its 2019 agreement to buy all the renewable diesel produced at the facility…

Solar Panels Over California’s Canals Could Save Water While Making Clean Energy

03/01/23
Researchers and a local utility are testing an innovative way to slow down evaporation while adding solar energy to the grid.

Lawmakers grill air quality agency on California climate plan, press for bold strategy

03/01/23
Members of the California legislature questioned the state’s senior air pollution official on Wednesday about her agency’s climate action plan, pressing for particulars on policy action needed to achieve ambitious carbon emissions reductions.

California needs to expand its clean energy. And it starts by expanding its grid.

02/27/23
California is a leader in establishing aggressive targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The state took another important step late last year, when the Air Resources Board unanimously approved the 2022 Scoping Plan—the ambitious roadmap…

California ups renewables target again with new plan to add 85GW by 2035

02/24/23
The updated carbon-cutting goals will require immense amounts of solar, batteries, offshore wind, geothermal and transmission. Can it all be built fast enough?

California PUC orders an additional 4 GW of clean energy resources to bolster grid reliability

02/24/23
February 24, 2023: The California Public Utilities Commission on Feb. 23 ordered load-serving entities in the state to procure an additional 4 GW of Net Qualifying Capacity in addition to the 11.5 GW it ordered…

Crafting Climate, Resources, and Environmental Budget Solutions

02/22/23
In response to the multibillion‑dollar budget problem the state is facing, the Governor’s budget proposal identifies significant solutions from recent augmentations made to climate, resources, and environmental programs. This report describes the Governor’s proposals and…

Public Lands In The Us Have Long Been Disposed To Fossil Fuel Companies. Now, The Lands Are Being Offered To Solar Companies

02/19/23
Standing in front of a small crowd at a library in this suburb of Phoenix last month, officials from the Bureau of Land Management outlined a plan that could reshape the development of solar energy...

Texas, California Stand to Gain Most From Biden Climate Law (1)

By Saijel Kishan 02/08/23
Texas and California, the US leaders in renewable energy, are likely to gain the most from President Biden’s landmark climate law.

California oil drilling restrictions make ballot initiative after industry lobbying

02/07/23
A California law barring new oil drilling in residential areas and school zones will be put directly to voters next November following a campaign by a state oil trade group.

Sunrun, PG&E to roll out 30-MW virtual power plant to support California grid in the summer

02/07/23
Solar and battery storage provider Sunrun announced plans on Monday to create a 30-MW virtual power plant by enrolling up to 7,500 existing and new rooftop solar and battery systems in Pacific Gas & Electric’s…

Three ambitious climate bills to watch in California

02/06/23
Good morning and welcome to The Climate 202! Today we’re reading about why the U.S. ski team is wearing climate-change-themed race suits at the world championships. (Hint: it’s about more than just looking cool.) ⛷

Edwards AFB Solar & Battery Storage Project Goes Live

02/06/23
Edwards Air Force Base in southern California is home to the Air Force Test Center, Air Force Test Pilot School, and NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center. It is the Air Force Materiel Command’s center for…

New transmission line will increase energy reliability in Arizona and California

By Amber Victoria Singer 02/06/23
A 125-mile transmission line is being built between Arizona and California, after nearly a decade of planning. The line, called the Ten West Link, will make it possible to send solar and wind energy between…

Harris visits West Valley to applaud renewable energy project

01/30/23
Vice President Kamala Harris visited Tonopah on Jan. 19 for the groundbreaking of a new renewable energy project called Ten West Link.

California’s climate plan could help speed energy transformation worldwide

By Daniel Sperling 01/26/23
California is embarking on an audacious new climate plan that aims to eliminate the state’s greenhouse gas footprint by 2045, and in the process, slash emissions far beyond its borders.

This giant underground battery is a $1-billion clean energy solution

By Sammy Roth 01/12/23
What can store solar power for after dark, doesn’t require lithium and costs three-quarters of a billion dollars? The answer is deep beneath the ground in California’s San Joaquin Valley — or at least, it…

California budget cuts climate change protects social investments

01/11/23
Facing a $22.5 billion deficit, California Governor Garvin Newsom expressed optimism in unveiling the 2023 budget for the state. The $297 billion package is $11 billion less than 2022 with cuts focused on electric vehicles,…

Is This Experimental Green Suburb the Future of Single-Family Housing?

11/29/22
At first glance, Durango at Shadow Mountain looks like just another cookie-cutter subdivision of new homes sprawling across an arid valley in Menifee, California, a rapidly growing exurb 90 miles southeast of Los Angeles.

California’s climate plan calls for no new gas-burning power plants

11/16/22
California regulators announced initiatives Wednesday to speed up the state’s clean-energy transition by cutting demand for fossil fuels by the end of the decade, including ending the construction of new gas-burning power plants — moves…

California unveils a plan to zero out greenhouse gas emissions by 2045

11/16/22
You can think of this plan as a roadmap for how California could essentially zero out greenhouse gas emissions in a little more than two decades. The plan calls for slashing emissions by 48% by…

California Releases Sweeping New Climate Action Plan to Reach Carbon Neutrality

11/16/22
California air regulators on Wednesday released a final draft of the state's new climate blueprint, charting an ambitious path to dramatically reduce planet-warming gas emissions over the next two decades.

The Sustainable Alternative to Renewables in California

11/16/22
Anyone serious about ushering California into an electric age, much less the entire world, faces immutable facts that are indifferent to passions and principles. With algebraic certainty, these facts lead to uncomfortable conclusions: It is…

California State Assembly Leadership Set to Continue Legacy of Ambitious Climate Action

11/14/22
“For the last 6 years, California State Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon has been a notable champion of ambitious and equitable climate action that will protect communities around the state. Under his collaborative and thoughtful leadership…

Renew financial’s residential pace program in california surpasses $945 million in energy efficiency and renewable energy investments

11/11/22
Renew Financial, the nation's most experienced and one of the leading providers of residential Property Assessed Clean Energy (R-PACE) financing, announced today that its California program, CaliforniaFirst, has funded renewable energy, energy efficiency, water conservation,…

California’s new solar energy proposal removes hefty grid connection fee

11/11/22
California regulators on Thursday revised their proposal for rooftop solar systems credits, a contentious matter as the state tries to expand renewable energy and respond to critics who want more equitable distribution of incentives.

California Climate Measure Fails After ‘Green’ Governor Opposed It in a Campaign Supporters Called ‘Misleading’

11/10/22
The only statewide climate measure on California’s ballot Tuesday failed, even though it would have raised billions to help meet the state’s ambitious greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets by subsidizing electric vehicles and charging infrastructure,…

GE Renewable Energy to upgrade Turlock and Modesto Irrigation Districts’ Don Pedro Hydroelectric Power Plant in California

11/09/22
GE Renewable Energy signed a refurbishment contract with the Turlock Irrigation District (TID) to modernize the powerhouse of the Don Pedro hydropower plant in California, which is jointly owned by TID and Modesto Irrigation District…

California Energy Commission Approves $31 Million for Tribal Long-Duration Energy Storage Project

11/03/22
A $31 million grant from the California Energy Commission (CEC) will be used to deploy a cutting-edge, long-duration energy storage system that will provide renewable backup power for the Viejas Tribe of Kumeyaay Indians and…

Going electric: Opponents clash as California aims to force diesel trucks off the road

10/27/22
Environmentalists and trucking industry groups sparred with clean air regulators today over a contentious proposal to phase out California’s big rigs and other trucks with internal combustion engines, and force manufacturers to speed mass-production of…

California approves a wave of aggressive new climate measures

By Brad Plumer 09/01/22
After lobbying by the governor, lawmakers adopted $54 billion in climate spending and voted to keep open the state’s last nuclear plant.

Protecting Californians Amidst Extreme Heat: A State Action Plan to Build Community Resilience

01/21/22
California’s best climate science projects that every corner of our state will be

Gov. Newsom announces plan to deal with extreme heat

01/12/22
Gov. Gavin Newsom’s administration this week announced a plan for addressing extreme heat that includes recommendations on how to monitor deaths caused by heat waves and the possible establishment of temperature limits for residential units.

Governor outlines climate action spending in budget proposal

01/12/22
Gov. Gavin Newsom called for $22.5 billion in state spending to combate climate change next year, offering a suite of solutions that mirror climate action and decarbonization efforts now underway in San Diego.

California targets offshore wind and green hydrogen in $2bn budget for ‘existential climate fight’

01/12/22
Governor Gavin Newsom’s latest California budget plan includes $2bn to promote development of green hydrogen, long-duration energy storage, offshore wind and other energy transition initiatives.

San Diego County energy storage project aims to help fight climate crisis

12/30/21
The project will include 12 sites across the county, with the first two sites breaking ground next month in Chula Vista and El Cajon. Other site locations include La Mesa, Spring Valley, Rancho Peñasquitos, and…

Three Solar Projects In California Mark A Massive Shift To Renewable Energy

12/24/21
As part of the U.S.' efforts to counter climate change and achieve a carbon pollution-free power sector by 2035, the Department of the Interior announced today that it has approved two solar projects with a…

SoCalGas Facilities Begin Switch to 100% Renewable Power Under Green Rate Program

09/08/21
Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) today announced it has begun purchasing renewable electricity under Southern California Edison's (SCE) Green Rate Program everywhere the gas utility is eligible for service by SCE. Including this new arrangement, SoCalGas…

Governor Newsom Holds Virtual Discussion with Leading Climate Scientists on State’s Progress Toward Carbon Neutrality

08/16/21
Governor Gavin Newsom today hosted a virtual meeting with internationally renowned scientists and climate change experts to discuss California’s ambitious climate goals, efforts to protect communities from harmful pollution and climate impacts, and how to…

California approves 11.5 GW of new clean resources in largest-ever single procurement order

07/07/21
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) on Thursday voted to approve an 11.5 GW procurement package composed entirely of clean energy resources that will come online in the middle of the decade, marking its largest-ever…

California Approves Microgrid Tariffs as Grassroots Groups Push for More Local Control of Energy

06/03/21
In a decision likely to be eyed closely by other states, California regulators yesterday approved microgrid tariffs and rules to hasten the deployment and commercialization of the technology.

California’s gas-fueled car ban: Can we really all drive electric cars?

By Dustin Gardiner 09/27/20
With the flick of a pen on the hood of a metallic-red electric Ford Mustang, Gov. Gavin Newsom set in motion the elimination of the internal combustion engine in California.

Preparing for Climate Change in California

08/30/20
This page provides an overview of the steps California is taking to prepare for the impacts of climate change.

The Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP)

03/18/19
The Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP), a major component of California's renewable energy planning efforts, will help provide effective protection and conservation of desert ecosystems while allowing for the appropriate development of renewable energy…

KEY RESOURCES

UCLA Heat Maps

07/25/22
Find out which communities are at greatest risk of harm during extreme heat days.

California State Profile and Energy Estimates

09/24/21
California is the most populous state in the nation, has the largest economy, and is second only to Texas in total energy consumption. California also has the world's fifth-largest economy and leads the nation in…

Energy State Bill Tracking Database

09/10/21
The searchable Energy Storage Legislation Database displays information in interactive maps and charts, tracking state activity from 2017 to the present.

Noaa National Centers for Environmental Information, State Climate Summaries

09/01/21
California, the most populous and third largest state, has a diverse climate. The deserts in the south are some of the hottest and driest areas of the United States, while higher elevations can experience low…

What is California Climate Action Corps?

05/25/21
In California, climate change is a threat to systems and people across the state. The impacts to our environment and health are worsening as we experience longer and more frequent droughts, devastating wildfires, and more.…

Op-Ed: How to save beaches and coastlines from climate change disasters

04/11/21
The frequency of natural disasters has soared in recent decades. Total damage topped $210 billion worldwide in 2020. With climate change, the costs attributed to coastal storms will increase dramatically. At the same time, coastal habitats such as…

A Pocket Guide to All-Electric Retrofits of Single-Family Homes

02/01/21
Welcome! This booklet is intended to be a simple “how-to” guide to help homeowners, home renters, utilities and policy makers who want to replace existing gas appliances with efficient electric alternatives, many of which are…

The First National Flood Risk Assessment

10/06/20
The First Street Foundation Flood Model represents the culmination of decades of research and development made possible by building upon existing knowledge and frameworks regularly referenced in the identification of flood risk.

The Impacts of Climate Change and the Trump Administration’s Anti-Environmental Agenda in California

09/19/20
Between 2017 and 2019, California experienced three wildfires, one drought, one flood, and one severe storm. The damages of each event led to losses of at least $1 billion.

California recovery resources

09/17/20
California Department of Insurance; In an effort to assist victims of these devastating fires, DOI works closely with other federal, state and local agencies to assist in recovery issues related to insurance. Californians should work…

State-by-State: California

07/31/20
California is vulnerable to increasing heat, melting snowpack, droughts, sea level rise and wildfires

New data shows nearly two-thirds of California’s electricity came from carbon-free sources in 2019

07/16/20
California remains ahead of its clean energy goals according to newly released data from the California Energy Commission (CEC). The CEC estimates that in 2019, 36 percent of the state’s retail electricity sales were provided…

Exploring California’s Climate Change Research

06/11/20
Cal-Adapt provides a view of how climate change might affect California. Find tools, data, and resources to conduct research, develop adaptation plans and build applications.

California’s renewable energy targets slashed carbon pollution — now there’s a proposal to pause them

06/10/20
California’s ambitious renewable energy targets helped drive a substantial drop in greenhouse gas pollution that propelled the state past its 2020 climate change goals early, according to a non-partisan analysis released this week. Yet one…

California Solar Data Current Through: Q4 2019

03/28/20
California has the largest solar market in the U.S. and has been a longtime champion of solar because of the many economic and environmental benefits it provides, including $57 billion in investment in the state.

Cap-and-Trade Program

03/10/20
This website provides information about California's Cap-and-Trade Program.

One thing we can do: Fix recycling

02/14/20
Recycling in the United States is broken. For years, we relied heavily on recycling operations in China to take our waste. But that came to an end in 2018, when Beijing barred the import of…

Low-Carbon Grid

02/02/20
CEERT’s Low-Carbon Grid Program promotes the integration of large amounts of renewable energy on the grid by tracking and intervening in crucial proceedings at the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) and other agencies. We also…

Wildfires and Climate Change: California’s Energy Future. A Report from Governor Newsom’s Strike Force

04/12/19
Climate change has created a new wildfire reality for California. The state’s fire season is now almost year round. More than 25 million acres of California wildlands are classified nder very high or extreme fire…

California Climate Investments Project Map

03/14/19
This map shows project level information on California Climate Investments using Cap-and-Trade auction proceeds. These projects are a subset of a larger and coordinated effort to make climate and energy investments throughout California that further…

California Climate Strategy

03/14/19
California's Integrated Plan for Addressing Climate Change.

California’s Fourth Climate Change Assessment

11/01/18
California’s Climate Change Assessments contribute to the scientific foundation for understanding climate-related vulnerability at the local scale and informing resilience actions, while also directly informing State policies, plans, programs, and guidance, to promote effective and…

Santa Monica Climate Action Adaptation Plan

04/02/18
The City Council directed staff to develop a plan to reach carbon neutrality by 2050 or sooner. The CAAP is the first phase of that work and includes proposed policies and measures that would help…

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They Abducted a River in California. And Nobody Stopped Them.

By Raymond Zhong   01/21/24  
During California’s most recent drought, officials went to great lengths to safeguard water supplies, issuing emergency regulations to curb use by thousands of farms, utilities and irrigation districts.
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California court ruling could threaten key source of funding for disputed giant water tunnel project

By Adam Beam   01/19/24  
A California judge says a nearly 65-year-old law does not give the state permission to borrow the billions of dollars it would need to build a large water project, a decision that could threaten a…
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Biden administration finalizes a $1.1 billion aid package for California’s last nuclear power plant

01/18/24  
President Joe Biden’s administration on Wednesday finalized approval of $1.1 billion to help keep California’s last operating nuclear power plant running.
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Gov. Newsom proposes $283M cut to California’s building decarbonization programs

By Dan Zukowski   01/16/24  
The proposed 2024-25 budget would also delay $600 million of funding for the state’s electric vehicle rebate program, Clean Cars 4 All, and EV charging stations by three years.
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Will storing CO2 in old oil fields slow global warming? First California plan nears approval

By Tony Briscoe   01/14/24  
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has signed off on a California oil company’s plans to permanently store carbon emissions deep underground to combat global warming — the first proposal of its kind to be tentatively…
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California Has Dealt a Blow to Renewable Energy, Some Businesses Say

By Ivan Penn   01/14/24  
California has long championed renewable energy, but a change in the state’s policies last year has led to a sharp decline in the installation of residential rooftop solar in the state.
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Californians got lucky with the weather this past year. Can it continue again in 2024?

By Paul Rogers   01/12/24  
Last year was the world’s hottest year by far since modern temperature records began in 1850, federal scientists confirmed Friday. But amid the severe heat waves that baked Africa, China, Greece and Texas, the devastating…
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Rooftop-solar industry blames PG&E, Newsom as Bay Area businesses struggle

By Ethan Baron   01/07/24  
Bay Area rooftop-solar businesses are reeling from a statewide change that gutted compensation for homeowners returning surplus power to the electrical grid, causing applications for new solar to plunge to a 10-year low and leading…
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Federal court won’t reconsider decision to overturn Berkeley, California, natural gas ban

By Ysabelle Kempe   01/02/24  
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit will not reconsider its decision to overturn Berkeley, California’s first-in-the-nation ban on natural gas hookups in new construction, according to a denial on Jan. 2.
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California’s Green Lawn Care Law: How It Affects You

By Lauren Bryant   01/02/24  
California’s law banning the sale of new gas-powered lawn care equipment affects homeowners, lawn care service providers, and the makers of lawn mowers, leaf blowers, string trimmers, and other landscaping equipment. The law, which took…
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Another home insurer withdraws — thousands of Californians will need to seek new coverage

By Clare Fonstein   12/22/23  
An insurance company that covers more than 2,000 policyholders in the state is discontinuing its homeowners business, adding another name to the list of insurers that have left California.
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“Extraordinary torrential downpours” flood Southern California

By Rebecca Falconer and Emma Hurt   12/22/23  
A storm that's been flooding Southern California streets with historic rainfall, disrupting travel and prompting water rescues and evacuations is expanding into the Southwest on Friday.
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California ends subsidies for buildings with natural gas hookups

By Wes Venteicher   12/15/23  
California’s utility regulator firmed up its stance against natural gas in buildings Thursday with a subsidy-ending vote.
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Who Gets the Water in California? Whoever Gets There First.

By Raymond Zhong   12/14/23  
The story of California’s water wars begins, as so many stories do in the Golden State, with gold.
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18 California children sue EPA over climate change

By Alex Wigglesworth   12/13/23  
Eighteen California children are suing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for allegedly violating their constitutional rights by allowing pollution from burning fossil fuels to continue despite knowing the harm it poses to kids.
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California is pumped about electric buses. Rural schools say they’re a pain

By Hailey Branson-Potts   12/07/23  
As the yellow bus carrying the Lassen High School girls' volleyball team turned right on Highway 44, a sign flashed in its headlights: NEXT SERVICES 51 MILES. It was just after 10 p.m. on a…
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The Salton Sea has even more lithium than previously thought, new report finds

By Sammy Roth   11/28/23  
Want to produce a huge amount of lithium for electric vehicle batteries — and also batteries that keep our homes powered after sundown — without causing the environmental destruction that lithium extraction often entails?
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Plans to get an entire block off the natural gas system take shape in one California city

By Ysabelle Kempe   11/27/23  
Underfoot in our cities lies a mammoth network of pipelines, delivering natural gas to millions of homes and businesses. In one small California city, plans are afoot to pare back this system: Albany, in the…
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Column: California strikes another blow against rooftop solar

By Sammy Roth   11/16/23  
Just a few weeks after Gov. Gavin Newsom returned from a trip to China that he claimed was focused on tackling the climate crisis, his appointees back home voted to slash financial incentives for rooftop…
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‘Superuser’ states devour climate grants as others get nothing

By Thomas Frank   11/13/23  
A federal climate grant program has been monopolized by five large states that together have collected half of its money, highlighting an uneven disbursement of government funding that often leaves poorer regions with less financial…
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Desperate for water, a desert city hopes to build a pipeline to the California Aqueduct

By Louis Sahagún   11/09/23  
After decades of unrestricted pumping in the rain-starved northwestern corner of the Mojave Desert, the Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Basin Authority has the distinction of managing one of the most critically overdrawn aquifers in California.
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‘We have come so far’: Five years after California’s historic Camp Fire killed 85, Paradise moves ahead with a goal to build a fireproof town

By Lisa M. Krieger   11/07/23  
As Jen Goodlin tends the snapdragons and squash in her fertile garden, she is surrounded by a town that is a charred skeleton of its former self. It is also a blank slate, offering a…
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What Happened When California Chose to Rebuild a Town Devastated by Wildfire

By Mark Arax   11/04/23  
Before the fire that destroyed almost everything here, Paradise was one of those blunders of American suburbia, a misplaced place that made little ecological sense. It inhabited a California landscape that wasn’t quite rolling foothill…
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Fast-Growing Wildfire in Southern California Forces Thousands to Evacuate

By Angely Mercado   11/01/23  
A wildfire in Southern California has burned more than 2,000 acres and prompted more than 4,000 people in Riverside County to evacuate. What is now being called the Highland Fire was first reported on Monday…
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As Climate Shocks Grow, Lawmakers Investigate Insurers Fleeing Risky Areas

By Christopher Flavelle   11/01/23  
Faced with growing losses from hurricanes, floods and wildfires, major insurance companies are pulling out of California, Florida and Louisiana — a shift that threatens to undermine the economies of those states.
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Cars are canceling out San Diego’s progress on renewable energy

By Andrew Bowen   10/30/23  
San Diego has made enormous strides toward getting more of its electricity from renewable sources such as wind and solar in recent years. But according to the city's latest inventory of greenhouse gas emissions, that…
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California’s commercial Dungeness crab season delayed for the sixth year in a row to protect whales

10/30/23  
The start of the commercial Dungeness crab season in California has been delayed for the sixth year in a row to protect humpback whales from becoming entangled in trap and buoy lines.
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Climb aboard four fishing boats with us to see how America’s warming waters are changing

By Trevor Hughes   10/30/23  
Alaskan fisherman Garrett Kavanaugh anxiously awaits the first catch of the season, hoping the Dungeness crabs he's chasing haven't suffered the same fate as the vanished snow crabs.
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San Diego temporarily solved its water crisis by turning ocean water into fresh water. But desalination won’t work everywhere.

By Maiya Focht   10/28/23  
Experts have said the huge costs and ecological risks mean these plants might not work nationwide.
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China says it wants to bolster climate cooperation with US as California Gov. Newsom visits Beijing

By Huizhong Wu   10/26/23  
China’s Environment Minister Huang Runqiu said Thursday his country wants to strengthen cooperation with the United States to combat climate change, as he met in Beijing with California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Newsom is on a…
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Clean Energy, Cherished Waters and a Sacred California Rock Caught in the Middle

By Lauren Sloss   10/24/23  
My paddle slips gently through calm ocean water as the kayak glides toward the mouth of Morro Bay Harbor. I approach a sandbar covered in resting cormorants, as sea otters float in nearby kelp, inky-eyed…
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Boiling Point: California’s fossil fuel crackdown continues — with some exceptions

By Sammy Roth   10/17/23  
In last Tuesday’s newsletter, I summed up some of the bills California Gov. Gavin Newsom had signed — and vetoed — dealing with climate change, energy and the environment.
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‘Another attempt to industrialize the coast’: California’s Central Coast residents work to stop — or at least slow down — offshore wind

By Julie Cart   10/16/23  
Joey Racano used to have a dining room table. Now the sunlit nook off the family kitchen more often than not serves as a conference room. The table is covered with maps, thick binders bulging…
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‘A massive enterprise’: California’s offshore wind farms are on a fast track

By Julie Cart   10/16/23  
If the American West represents the “geography of hope,” as author Wallace Stegner wrote, then what better place than California’s far north to illustrate the eternal tension between the limitless potential of big ideas and…
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3 counties could power over 250,000 homes with clean energy with one change: ‘Imagine our entire state’s potential’

By Jane Donohue   10/14/23  
Anew analysis demonstrates that three Southern California counties could power over 270,000 homes by lining their highways with solar energy infrastructure
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Oil companies may face larger fines, beefed up enforcement under new law

By Janet Wilson   10/10/23  
A new law designed to strengthen California's enforcement powers against petroleum companies who cause major oil spills or other hazards was signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Saturday. But a major oil spill is still…
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California governor signs bill to speed utility interconnections

By Robert Walton   10/09/23  
California Gov. Gavin Newsom, D, on Saturday announced he signed SB 410, aimed at speeding customer interconnections to the utility grid and helping the state to electrify buildings and vehicles. “It is imperative that we…
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California to require big firms to reveal carbon emissions in first law of its kind

By Dharna Noor   10/09/23  
A groundbreaking California law will force large companies doing business in the state – including major global corporations – to disclose their planet-heating carbon emissions. The measure, signed into law by the governor, Gavin Newsom,…
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California will soon require many cities to significantly cut water use. Here are the details

By Kurtis Alexander   10/05/23  
A second straight wet winter may be in store for California, but state water regulators are turning their attention to the prospect of long-term water shortages, with plans for permanent statewide restrictions.
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This utility’s undergrounding plan is causing sticker shock

By Wes Venteicher and Blanca Begert   10/05/23  
Pacific Gas & Electric has been banking on burying power lines underground — both as a solution to the catastrophic wildfires it’s been responsible for starting and to the crippling liabilities that forced it into…
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New analysis shows how much PG&E bills could rise next year

By Julie Johnson   09/23/23  
Pacific Gas and Electric Co. customers will pay between about $25 and $31 more each month for energy next year, according new rate estimates from state regulators obtained Thursday by the Chronicle.
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El Niño is getting stronger, and odds are tilting toward another wet winter for California

By Hayley Smith   09/22/23  
On the heels of a record-setting wet and warm August, forecasters on Thursday announced that El Niño is gaining strength and will almost certainly persist into 2024.
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California plans big insurance shifts as climate change hits home

By Brianna Sacks   09/22/23  
California top leaders announced Thursday that they are making reforms to the state’s insurance system to stabilize the market, a big shift in one of the nation’s most disaster-prone states with one of the world’s…
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Here are all the climate and environment bills that California just passed

By Sammy Roth   09/19/23  
The legislative session had come to a close in Sacramento, and elected officials had approved a whole bunch of climate change, energy and environment bills — and rejected others. Here’s a brief roundup of some…
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California tops FEMA’s new list of areas vulnerable to weather disasters. What does it mean for the Bay Area?

By Katie Lauer   09/19/23  
Despite the name, “Community Disaster Resilience Zones” are not local havens capable of withstanding storms and other extreme weather. But the Federal Emergency Management Agency, better known as FEMA, is spending billions in hopes that…
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California opens the floodgates on Big Oil

09/18/23  
The state of California just launched a game-changing climate lawsuit against oil majors, bringing the weight of one of the world’s largest economies and the most populous state in the nation to bear against some…
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California sues five major oil companies for ‘decades-long campaign of deception’ about climate change

By Louis Sahagún   09/16/23  
California is suing five of the largest oil and gas companies in the world, alleging that they engaged in a “decades-long campaign of deception” about climate change and the risks posed by fossil fuels that…
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California Senate approves orphan oil wells bill

By Wes Venteicher   09/13/23  
The California Senate narrowly approved a bill Wednesday that would require oil well owners to take more responsibility upfront for the costs of eventually plugging used wells.
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2022 Report: Indicators of Climate Change in California

09/12/23  
The Indicators of Climate Change in California report documents observed changes in the state’s climate and its impacts in the state. Indicators are scientific measurements that track trends and conditions relating to climate change. Collectively,…
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California must mandate all-electric new buildings, local officials tell governor

By Ysabelle Kempe   09/12/23  
Twenty-six local government leaders in California — including those from San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Jose — are calling on Gov. Gavin Newsom, D, to urgently pursue statewide standards requiring new buildings to be…
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