Two Major Clean Energy Bills Moving Forward In California

Two new bills that aim to cut greenhouse gas emissions and pollution produced by California homes and businesses are moving on to the state legislature. SB 1477 was approved by the California Senate on Wednesday May 30 while the Assembly passed AB 3232 on Thursday May 31. Each bill will be dissected by committee hearings for a final decision by the end of August.

These new bills both aim to mitigate and decrease the total amount of pollution put into the air by businesses and homes still powered solely by natural gas and other fossil fuels. Despite being the largest producer of renewable energy in the country, California also suffers as the one of the most polluted in the country with 93 percent of citizens still living in areas that exceed federal ozone limits.

SB 1477 seeks to create two programs that will help develop the market for low-emissions new building construction and assist with the development of clean heating technologies. Among the top producers of emissions by households and businesses contributing to California’s pollution problem are furnaces and water heaters powered by gas. Programs created under SB 1477 would spur early market adoption for smart heating technologies by lowering the up front cost to upgrade. The goal is to motivate Californians to “go green” when selecting their next heating device or home thereby creating mass market adoption.

AB 3232 will require the California Energy Commission to assess the ability of the state to reduce carbon emissions from buildings to 40 percent below 1990 measurements by 2030. This has been the statewide goal for the economy through such progress as the Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act of 2015 and the recent requirement for zero-net electricity on new households by 2020. With a large gap still remaining in reaching this target, it will be essential to identify key opportunities, options, and policies that will drive progress while ensuring a fair deal for residents.

Learn more about SB 1477: https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180SB1477

Learn more about AB 3232: http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201720180AB3232

Source: NRDC

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