Gov. Brown revives Manuel Pérez’s renewable energy plan

Tatiana Sanchez, The Desert Sun | Link to article

A locally authored plan to dramatically increase the state’s renewable energy goals is regaining momentum, as part of a series of ambitious goals California Gov. Jerry Brown wants to achieve in the next 15 years.

Brown, who delivered his inaugural address on Monday, called on California to increase the amount of electricity derived from renewable sources from one-third to 50 percent.

The plan mirrors a 2013 proposal championed by then-Assemblyman V. Manuel Pérez, a Coachella Democrat who outlined an aggressive agenda to kick up California’s renewable energy goal to 51 percent by 2030 and require utilities to base purchases of renewable power not only on cost, but each project’s impact on greenhouse gas emissions and grid reliability.

Pérez’s idea, penned as Assembly Bill 177, was all but gutted of its strongest provisions during committee hearings, following widespread opposition from business groups, utilities and even some renewable energy developers and trade groups.

Despite the previous opposition, Coachella Valley political leaders on Monday said Brown’s proposal would be a natural fit for a region known for promoting and adapting the use of renewable energy.

Though the plan is ambitious, Pérez said “it’s a matter of political will.” (complete article)