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California: Combating Climate Change with Renewables & a Bigger Grid by ClimateYou Editor Abby Luby

Two days ago, California passed legislation that will aggressively combat climate change. The bill, which is waiting to be signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown, will require utilities to generate all their electrical power from renewable sources by 2045. If signed into law, California could be the second state in the country after Hawaii, with a 100 percent renewable electricity. Also passed earlier this week were amendments to a bill that would expand the state’s power grid to as many as 14 western states. The current grid serves 30 million Californians. Of the many advantages expected of a larger, regional grid would be lower power costs and an increased use of renewables. The down side is a regional grid of this size would relinquish state authority to the federal government, requiring federal approvals; more Trump administration oversight could mean using  more coal plants. Currently California gets about one-third of its electricity from solar, wind and other renewable energy sources and will most likely hit the 50% mark in about 10 years.

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