California Governor Brown signed Executive Order B-55-18 last year further modifying the states reduced carbon energy targets by mandating a year 2045 goal where the state’s energy use must achieve zero emission capability and be carbon neutral.
This order represents a significant escalation from California’s initial climate program in 2006 where AB 32 was passed with that law requiring the state to achieve year 1990 emission levels by year 2020. AB 32 was implemented through mandating use of increased renewable energy, implementing a state carbon tax and providing numerous subsidies promoting renewable projects.
Since its inception the state’s carbon tax has been budgeted to provide nearly $17 billion in proceeds from California energy users.
During that same time period renewable energy subsidy programs have provided about $11 billion in supporting renewable energy program contributions including investment tax credits for roof top solar PV projects and production tax credits for qualified renewable projects including out of state renewable projects that provide Ca. imported electricity. EIA data shows that California imports more electricity than any other state amounting to about 10% of its total energy consumption in year 2016 with about 20% of that imported energy from renewables.
California’s renewable portfolio standard requires that retail electricity sales be provided 33% through renewable energy resources by year 2020 and 50% through renewable energy resources by year 2050.
Under Federal Law renewable projects commencing construction before January 1, 2018 receive a Production Tax Credit (PTC) of $0.023 dollars per Kwh for periods up to 10 years These subsidies provide revenues which cover most if not all of the capital investment costs for these projects which allows them to market energy at lower costs while only having to cover operations and maintenance expenses.
Because these renewable projects cannot be dispatched this unreliable energy forces dispatchable fossil plants to be on line running at lower power levels to operate and match generation to the power needed. This type of operation results in increasing the fossil plants unit costs of production which electric grid customers must pay.
Additionally the fossil plants must also be dispatched to operate on line at lower power levels to provide electric grid stability functions including system frequency, voltage, and synchronization control, regulating margin and spinning and standby reserves with none of these functions capable of being provided by renewables. Again electric grid customers must pay the increased unit costs of production incurred by the fossil plants because they are forced to run at lower power levels to provide these grid stability requirements.
Renewable energy projects have been provided with government dictated highly advantageous market conditions which drive up electric grid costs to consumers who must pony up the increased costs incurred to provide electric grid reliability and stability capabilities which cannot be provided by renewables. In addition consumers pay for the huge government dictated subsidies and tax benefits enjoyed by renewable projects. This highly uneven energy market playing field is consistently concealed by the government, media and renewable energy advocates.
Without government providing production tax credits to renewable energy projects many of these projects would simply not be built with business guru Warren Buffet astutely noting:
“I will do anything that is basically covered by the law to reduce Berkshire’s tax rate,”
“For example, on wind energy, we get a tax credit if we build a lot of wind farms. That’s the only reason to build them. They don’t make sense without the tax credit.”
The state government, agency regulators and media have constantly hyped renewable energy programs and projects and claimed that California is leading the world in “fighting climate change” by reducing California’s greenhouse gases. These claims have been shown to be completely erroneous and in fact such claims amount to nothing but climate alarmist propaganda statements. California’s emissions reductions are irrelevant to global emissions growth that is totally controlled by the world’s developing nations.
California’s politically driven and globally inconsequential emissions reduction claims have almost always been addressed via the state’s electricity use sector but little has been addressed by the state regarding its transportation, industrial, commercial, residential and agricultural energy use sectors that comprise about 84% of the state’s total emissions.
California provides incomplete and limited information regarding the states total energy consumption picture and instead provides energy data that emphasizes the electricity sector which is focused on renewable energy government mandated programs, projects, subsidies and taxes.
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) data for U.S. states total energy consumption from 1960 through year 2016 shows that California after a decade of tens of billions in government subsidies and mandates requiring use of renewables still required fossil fuels to meet the needs of about 82% of its total energy use in year 2016.
The 82% fossil fuel dominate energy use resource by California in 2016 after a decade of state government mandated use of renewable energy, billions in carbon tax fees and more billions in renewable subsidies remains little changed from California’s year 2006 energy use of fossil fuels where 85% of state’s total energy consumption was obtained from fossil fuels.
Additionally the state’s wind and solar resources which have been the primary beneficiaries of its energy policy mandates, subsidies and tax schemes provided about 1% of California’s total energy consumption in 2006 with that figure rising to just 7% (including renewable imports from other states) of its total energy consumption in year 2016 a decade later.
California’s residential electricity rates are already over 40% higher than the average in the U.S., are about 50% higher than the average residential rates in the adjoining states of Arizona and Nevada and are over 70% higher than the residential rates in the adjoining state of Oregon.
The incremental increase in California’s residential electricity rates since 2006 is 60% higher than the incremental increase in U.S residential rates, 4 times higher than Oregon’s incremental increase in residential rates and between 25% to 30% higher than occurred in the states of Arizona and Nevada.
By far the largest energy use sector in California is transportation energy which comprised about 40% of the states total energy use in year 2016 followed by the industrial sector at 24%, commercial sector at 19% and residential sector at 17% according to EIA data.
The state has no idea and is totally clueless on how to transform the transportation energy use sector to zero emissions or for that matter how to transform any other of these energy sectors to zero emissions as mandated by Governor Brown’s politically contrived and ill-considered executive order.
The only hand waving scheme the state officials can offer at this point is to speculate that increased use of EVs and other low emission vehicles must play a bigger role in the transportation sector even though after nine years of state subsidies which cost Californians $620 million dollars only 277,000 vehicles applied for subsidies for EV and other low emissions vehicles. These subsidy purchased vehicles represent less than 1% of California’s 35 million registered vehicles.
Additionally and contrary to the beliefs of many climate alarmist propagandists EVs are not zero emission vehicles and neither is the state’s 98 billion dollar bullet train to nowhere pipe dream.
Germany which is years ahead of California in pushing politically contrived renewable energy and EVs policies demonstrates how expensive, futile and unrealistic such programs are in the real world having committed nearly one trillion euros toward these efforts only to see failure in not reaching its year 2020 hyped emission reduction targets (which were no where near zero emissions) and also realizing that EVs produce more emissions than its diesel vehicles.
Perhaps CARB leader and Governor Brown long time ally Mary Nichol’s threat to ban all California ICE vehicles in the future will have to be imposed with the economic outcome of destroying the states economy but satisfying the state’s environmental extremist climate alarmist dictates. This action will also surely result in huge and harsh lifestyle detriments to the present owners and users of the 35 million registered ICE vehicles.
After solving the transportation sector carbon neutral energy and emissions quagmire the state government can then turn to putting the screws to the industrial, commercial, residential and agricultural energy use sectors and proceed to destroy those sectors as well to achieve its zero emissions and carbon neutrality absurd mandate.
The state has a number of renewable energy use technologies including fuel ethanol, biomass and geothermal that today provide about 5% of California’s total energy consumption but which are not zero emission. All these technologies will have to be replaced to meet Governor Browns zero emissions Executive Order nonsense.
At present the state’s zero emission long term energy resources includes large and small hydro, wind and solar. These energy resources provided only about 10% of the states total energy in 2016. Thus somehow the states reckless politicians must come up with new zero emission energy resources for what now represents 90% of the state’s total energy consumption.
Nuclear is excluded from the above zero emissions total since the state foolishly required that by year 2025 the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant shutdown. This shutdown of large scale reliable base load zero emissions nuclear power is just another example of the state’s irresponsible actions that demonstrate California’s governmental incompetence.
Hydro has variable energy capability based on rainfall and little if any additional large hydro can be built in the future in California because of environmental extremists objections to large dam reservoir projects in the state.
Environmentalists are still pushing for the removal of certain large hydro dam projects in California.
California’s incompetence in managing its forest management obligations and wildfire prevention responsibilities has led to increased wildfires and resulting emissions which are not carbon neutral and represent yet another huge problem for the state to finally address including acknowledging full accountability. This is yet another example of the state’s governmental incompetence.
California’s government has no idea how to achieve the numerous emission reduction targets and goals established by its energy and emissions ignorant, incompetent and clueless politicians along with their supporting media which unwittingly praise these purely climate alarmist propaganda driven proposals. Apparently all that is required to legislate such preposterous schemes in California is just make believe magical thinking.
Worse yet is the fact that achieving such massively costly, bureaucratically intrusive and economically damaging schemes has a completely irrelevant impact on global emissions and climate outcomes. These catastrophically inane proposals clearly demonstrate that California’s government leaders are living in a bizarre Alice in Wonderland world devoid of any relevant connection to reality.
In year 2000 through 2001 the state of California experienced a politically driven and self-inflicted energy crisis which I was directly involved with during the “clean up this mess phase”. This crisis was driven by the state government’s political leaders in Sacramento and San Francisco who had the absolutely half-baked idea that they could deregulate California’s electricity energy market and save tons of money. The results are summarized below.
“With the passage of AB 1890 in 1996, California led the nation in efforts to deregulate the electricity sector. The act was hailed as a historic reform that would reward consumers with lower prices, reinvigorate California’s then-flagging economy, and provide a model for other states. Six years later, the reforms lay in ruins, overwhelmed by electricity shortages and skyrocketing prices for wholesale power. The utilities were pushed to the brink of insolvency and are only slowly regaining their financial footing. The state became the buyer of last resort, draining the general fund and committing itself to spending $42 billion more on long-term power deals that stretch over the next ten years. The main institutions of the competitive market established by AB 1890, the Power Exchange and retail choice in particular, have been dismantled.”
In addition massive state electrical energy blackouts occurred on a regular basis.
The state government politicians who masterminded this debacle never apologized to the 35 million citizens of California for their incompetence but settled for pointing fingers at everybody but themselves for delivering this catastrophic outcome.
Hydrocarbons, effective, organic, and available. Nuclear, even better for a base load, and mission critical applications. Renewable drivers are great, but green technology has niche value.
And their niche is purely Off Grid applications and residential rooftop solar that isn’t back fed into the grid. I believe that a better place for any needed backup systems to unreliables is at the unreliable generation sites. If a solar farm has a nameplate capacity of 450 Mw, they should be required to supply 450 Mw 24/7 regardless of what they need to do to produce it. Same for wind…
So, Buffett instead of saying “No, I won’t build projects that are detrimental to Californians” says “Yes, I know these projects are detrimental to Californians and I don’t care”. He could be a leader in standing up to the insanity. Mr. Buffett, you are a horses arse.
He is a very rich horses arse.
What is it about some people who always seek to blame someone else.
Do you seriously believe ;that if Mr. Buffet had refused to take advantage of the money being passed around by politicians, nobody else would have stepped in?
Mr. Buffet’s responsibility is to his shareholders, he has zero responsibility to the tax payers who stupidly elect politicians who then pass this nonsense.
The horse’s arse here is archie, who wants other people to pay the price to clean up the mess that he and other voters created.
Like a Hollywood production, the state of california presents a compelling environMental story, without the constraints of reality. “Scenes may be real….or created.”
I have lived in California my entire life and I am at the point of being ashamed to tell anyone any more. This is just one more example of people being sheep and believing the politicians BS and then voting for them again. Hell, I think Joe Isuzu could be elected as Governor if he ran as a democrat or progressive.
California continues to virtue signal and misinform to the point of lying about their “carbon footprint”. California doesn’t include out of state electricity imports except where it is favorable to the ‘no carbon’ image they are portraying to the world. Electricity from Nevada and Oregon generated by hydro is counted as”no carbon” but electricity imported from coal fired stations in 4 states is not. All California’s backup is coal fired. They keep saying they’re leading the nation/world in renewable energy but it’s just a big lie.
Likewise California ignores the carbon emissions arriving at it’s ports in the form of manufactured goods from foreign factories powered by coal. Here’s an image of the Port of Long Beach:
California’s major ports (Long Beach, Los Angeles, Richmond, Oakland, and Stockton) have foreign imports in excess of 100,000,000 short tons annually. How much CO2 was generated during manufacture and transport of these imports?
Stretch goal… electric cargo ships (designed and manufactured by Tesla) before 2040! Whooo-hoo! You’ve got this California. Keep fighting the good fight.
Haven’t come across that yet. Will it be a converted tugboat, or will it have the full 108,000 hp like the latest 14 cylinder 2-stroke diesel marine engines? Show me the batteries!
Electric cargo ships would have to be matched with renewable energy for manufacturing in China, India, etc. etc. to complete the virtue signaling.
California has highest per capita poverty rate of any state when adjusted for cost of living. Many can not afford the housing, electricity costs and gasoline costs.
Not in CA, but in WA State, I drive a PZEV.
Some of CA’s electricity comes to them from up here:
CA’s electric generation system was never deregulated.
What was sold as deregulation was in fact nothing more than a massive change in how electricity was regulated. The total regulations did not decrease, they were just changed with little though ahead of time as to how the new regulations should work.
True. They re-regulated it and called it ‘deregulation.’
Then later declared that deregulation doesn’t work.
“California Governor Brown signed Executive Order B-55-18 last year further modifying the states reduced carbon energy targets by mandating a year 2045 goal where the state’s energy use must achieve zero emission capability and be carbon neutral.”
You have to understand what is going on here, behind the curtain in Sacramento.
The Democrat politicians understand they cannot keep raising taxes on citizens to funds all their re-distribution schemes. Most of all they can’t directly raise taxes to fill holes in deeply under-funded public union retirement funds. The renewable climate scam offers a way around this.
First of all,Tom Steyer owns most of these Sacramento Democrats due to his campaign support to them and via unlimited money to PACs that support Democratic Party themes in California.
Tom Steyer is heavily invested in long positions of Renewable energy, and in all the highly complex derivatives that only sophisticated investors partake in.
Same thing for Cal’s two big Public Union Retirement Funds. Both CalSTRS and CalPERS have huge actuarial holes where they a deeply underfunded to future pay-outs. One way to correct his under-funded situation is to get the Funds assets invested in renewable schemes where the power of the State can be used to juice up the ROI far above the 7% ROI they claim they are targeting.
Funds invest in renewable schemes and renewable business ventures.
Democrats in Sacramento ensure those renewable ventures are highly profitable with mandates and subsidies. Thus the Renewable Mandates and subsidies provide an in-direct taxation on California’s middle-class via electricity bills that otherwise they wouldn’t tolerate a direct tax to fill pension holes. It’s a sleight-of-hand confidence scheme centered around the climate hustle.
For anyone to think any of this Renewable Energy hustle is about climate is simply naive.
That sounds like a stock market scam, time to get the SEC on the case. And at best a short term fix as it drives out those who can leave, and impoverishes those remaining to where they can’t pay the inflated utility bills.
Completely legal scam.
Power of the state to pick winners and losers.
Power of rich Liberals to exercise their “free speech” to support Democrats who support their scheme.
There are many things that are illegal for private citizens to do, but legal for politicians to do.
Dan Walters talked a bit about “wouldn’t tolerate a direct tax to fill pension holes.” recently-
…”Regardless of the weasel words, “legal settlements and liabilities” certainly include the district’s inescapable legal obligations for pensions and other benefits. Moreover, by underwriting other district expenses, the new taxes would indirectly pay for those fast-growing benefit costs, thanks to fungibility. It’s just a semantic exercise to fool voters.”…..
This is not newa. News is thata las a large group ofrenewable addictsa believe ub the umpossible and want to take us with them.
Dude, you need either more caffeine or a lot less before you post.
I would recommend reading the article:
“Electricity storage as a matching tool between variable renewable energy and load”,
proposed for publication. Link below:
Reducing CO2 emissions in California will have no effect on global climate. If California is really serious about decreasing the use of fossil fuels in the state then they would invest in the building and use of new nuclear power plants.
Climate Change is not about climate or CO2.
It never has been about climate for the power players behind the curtain pulling the levers.
If it were about climate, much more would’ve been done to stop China’s emissions growth.
It’s a vehicle for wealth redistribution in the Western capitalist democracies.
It’s a means to siphon money out of the middle-class without most realizing it.
This just means rising costs for energy. Since 2004, the UK has really ramped up renewables. During this time electric rates have risen over 60% and natural gas prices over 100% (Now that was a good trick!)
In order to disguise the effects of rising energy costs on households the UK government redefined fuel poverty so that the number included was reduced by one third. The excuse used was that the calculation by the old method included some households with much higher than average wealth. These amounted to approximately 1% of the total.
The government has pointed the finger at the supply companies (their own fault for operating a cartel) and introduced a price cap which was immediately seen as a price target by the major suppliers. The British people are paying dearly for power in a regulated market with a weak regulator and ever increasing greentwattery. In winter the poorest are having to choose between food and warmth, some are dying as a direct result.
I vaguely recall that the meddling included deregulating wholesale prices while limiting the rise in retail electricity prices.
So, the utilities had to pay huge and could not pass the increases on to the final customer.
I live in BC, which then had surplus hydro-power, which was sold at a high but agreed price to CA.
Later in a bout of recrimination, California sued BC over something.
In anything it is wiser to have market forces setting policy not arbitrary bureaucrats and politicians.
My feeling is that the people of California deserve everything that is going to happen to them. I say we should cheer them on. We can’t save them from their own foolishness. But we can point at them an laugh when it all goes south on them.
” I say we should cheer them on. We can’t save them from their own foolishness. But we can point at them an laugh when it all goes south on them.”
yup, they should be encouraged to cut harder and deeper and faster.
The faster they show the rest of the country how unworkable renewables are, the faster we can get over that nonsense.
My relatives in the San Francisco bay area have great confidence in PG&E’s public statements that a target of 70% renewable electricity for California is easily achievable by 2030, and that it can be done without Diablo Canyon.
I’ve told them that PG&E has no choice but to say these kinds of things if the corporation still wants to do business in California.
More than that, in order to reach the 70% figure, extraordinary investments will be needed in a variety of energy conservation measures so that California as a state consumes roughly two-thirds as much electricity per capita in 2030 as it does today.
How does this happen? Who pays for it? Which socio-economic groups carry the bulk of the financial burdens and experience the greatest portion of the necessary lifestyle sacrifices?
My bay area relatives dismiss these points out of hand. They’ve drunk the 70% by 2030 Kool Aid by the gallon. They themselves can easily afford the added expense if they must rebuild their homes to strict new energy standards and must pay twice as much for electricity as they do today.
But what about everybody else who lives in California? Can they afford what 70% renewables by 2030 will cost them?
The only way this question can be answered in a way that sticks in the public’s mind is for Californians to make a serious attempt at reaching 70% renewables by 2030 while accepting the consequences for themselves and for their state if the project fails to deliver.
Sort of makes me think of the Australian Capital Territory here in Australia. Raves that it will “effectively” run by 100% renewable energy in October this year. Note the “effectively”. The “reality”: 76% from large scale renewable power bought through reverse auctions, 22% bought from ACT’s contribution to the renewable energy target — from solar, wind and hydro farms across the country and 2% from excess solar power generated by ACT residents.
Translation: 100% sleight of hand.
I think states that elect to commit economic suicide should just get on with it … a five year plan would be much better as that would give plenty of time for anyone with any sense to get out … and by moving they’ll give a boost to sensible regions.
“ just another example of the state’s irresponsible actions that demonstrate California’s governmental incompetence.”
It seems that New Mexico’s FEMALE Governor was in a big hurry to demonstrate HER irresponsible governmental incompetence, ……. to wit:
‘…In year 2000 through 2001 the state of California experienced a politically driven and self-inflicted energy crisis which I was directly involved with during the “clean up this mess phase”…The state government politicians who masterminded this debacle never apologized to the 35 million citizens of California for their incompetence…’
Enron raked CA silly. Those politicians probably just regret they let Enron play that game for free instead of getting their own piece of the pie.
The sad thing is that this anti-carbon focus is diverting efforts away from the real solutions.
Fischer-Tropsch Process; The Real Commercially Viable Energy Solution
A study found that California has already spent more on renewables than it would have cost to get all their electricity from nuclear power. Despite that, they still get 50% from fossil fuels. California has way too much solar power at peak times and they pay Arizona to take some of it off their hands.
The complexity of operating a electrical grid system is beyond the understanding of most people. So it is easy to say we want 100% renewable and all will be great while overlooking the total unreliablity of renewable energy. It only produces when nature or daylight allows it. There is nothing in renewable to provide back up when the wind isn’t blowing or the sun ain’t shining. PERIOD. You have to have some form of backup that can pick up load when the winds stops blowing for the day or a large cloud blocks your solar panels. On overcast days your solar energy is very fickled. How do you make up for the lost generation? The lefties are NEVER willing to talk about these flaws. They are MONUMENTAL.
CASIO has discussed the challenges they are facing over the years. They currently report out how big the curtailment levels are and how opening up the market to other players is reducing the incidence(s) of negative prices.
The need for flexible demand has been noted by CASIO over the years.
The hockey stick looking graph of increased curtailment over the years in the spring is getting rather noticeable in the “Monthly Economic Curtailment in the 5 minute market RTD by resources”
“This shutdown of large scale reliable base load zero emissions nuclear power is just another example of the state’s irresponsible actions that demonstrate California’s governmental incompetence.”
Why is it “incompetent” to shut down a nuclear power plant that is sitting a mile away from a geologic fault in a seismically active area?
Who allowed it to be built there?
Was it CA’s government?
California has little to show for all its RE activities.
Here is a comparison of California, US and Vermont Electricity Prices, All Sectors
It is important to understand no cost ever disappears. The key issue is allocation (a.k.a., follow the money), which often implies politics, and realizing state and federal energy policy objectives.
Only a part of the costs of RE projects is added to the utility rate base. The other parts are paid for by: a) increasing taxes, fees and surcharges, and/or 2) increasing prices of goods and services, and/or c) adding to federal and state debts. Thus any increase in rates reveals only a part of the cost picture.
The weighted average US electricity prices includes high California prices and quantities, a major component of the weighted average. Table 1 shows the weighted average US price including California. See URLs
If California were removed, it would lower the US average. A comparison of California versus that lower US average shows California rates, all sectors, increased 28.36% and US rates (wo/California) only 5.45% during the 2010 – 2018 period.
California’s irrational/over-the-top/expensive RE efforts are demonstrating, the more highly subsidized RE, the higher the electric rates. But that is only a part of the cost picture, because not all costs end up in the rate schedules, as shown in section 1.
Vermont: The Vermont rates, all sectors, as posted by EIA, do not include the Efficiency Vermont surcharge and the Electric Assistance Program fee tacked onto electric bills by politicians to finance pseudo-social programs.
The EV surcharge has been increasing from about 6% in 2010 to about 8.0% in 2018 for most households.
If EV and EAP charges were added, Vermont rates increased 16.34% and US rates (w/tiny Vermont) only 7.63% during the 2010 – 2018 period. See table.
82%? I just saw Arnold Schwarzenegger on Austrian TV claiming that California had exceeded 25% renewable energy 2018. What is it now? Is the data fake or is the terminator blatantly lying? Never mind that Arnold emits more CO2 for every flight between California and Austria than most average people he wants to lecture in many months of normal life. He has the environmental footprint of a dinosaur and wants to be a moral example. If CO2 really killed the planet (which I think is bogus), people like Arnold would be the foremost planet killers. Instead, the gullible masses hang on his lips and swallow his every utterance. Idiots really …
Arnold like many other California politicians is referring to the amount of the states electricity that is provided by renewables. Electricity only represents about 21% of the states total energy consumption.
California is going to starve itself of water before it it’s too warm .
Draining acquirers . allowing millions of illegals and a completely bankrupt state by any standard.
If so called climate change was their problem .
They should be able to tough it out for eleven years till the planet ends or what ever AOC claims .