Proposition 7: Renewable Energy

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What is the Renewable Energy Statute?

This proposition will increase renewable energy production targets for all California energy providers: 40% of total energy produced by 2020 and 50% of total energy produced by 2025 must be from renewable, cleaner sources, such as solar, wind, geothermal, biomass and hydroelectric energy. Unlike now, these new renewable energy production targets will be extended to smaller municipally owned utilities like Los Angeles and Sacramento. Currently, municipally owned energy providers are not required to meet renewable energy production targets.

Electric rates would not be increased by more than 3% and energy providers could not recover the cost of increasing renewable energy production through increased consumer rates. Proposition 7 will also expand financial penalties for energy providers who do not reach the new targets and will use the collected penalties for new infrastructure to increase renewable energy sources.

What do supporters of Proposition 7 say?
  • This initiative will replace half of the fossil fuels used for electricity generation in California with clean energy technologies, such as solar, geothermal, wind, biomass, and hydropower, thus reducing harmful pollution in the environment;
  • Does not raise taxes or have any fiscal impact on the state budget;
  • The Solar and Clean Energy Initiative creates high tech jobs and grows California's economy. Construction and maintenance workers on clean energy plants will be paid a prevailing wage. Solar electric plants generate between 160% and 720% more jobs than a natural gas fired plant;
  • Keeps all environmental protection, such as the Desert Protection Act, intact so sensitive wildlife habitats will not be harmed by new renewable electric power plant construction.
What do opponents of Proposition 7 say?
  • The goal of 50% renewable electricity by 2025 is impossible to achieve;
  • The proposition counts signed long-term contracts for renewable energy sources toward annual targets, potentially allowing corporations to simply sign contracts and never use the cleaner energy source;
  • It provides an expedited approval process to build clean energy plants that would be used to circumvent the California Environmental Quality Act and the Federal Desert Protection Act;
  • Unreasonable targets will force utilities to purchase renewable energy at any price and drive up prices.
Who supports Proposition 7?

Californians for Solar and Clean Energy, Green for All, Los Angeles, Dolores Huerta, Co-Founder United Farm Workers Union, Keith Carson, Alameda County Supervisory, Bevan Dufty, San Francisco Councilmember, John Burton, Former State Senator and President Pro-Tempore (Partial Lists)

Who opposes Proposition 7?

Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies (CEERT), California League of Conservation Voters, Natural Resources Defense Council, Environmental Defense, Union of Concerned Scientist, Vote Solar Initiative, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (five chapters) (Partial Lists)

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