California locked in to carbon-free power by 2045

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Gov. Jerry Brown, signs a copy of the environmental measure SB100 as the bill's author, state Sen.

Brown said in a statement as he signed the law in Sacramento, "California is committed to doing whatever is necessary to meet the existential threat of climate change".

The law, known as SB 100, also sets goals of 50 percent clean energy by 2025 and 60 percent by 2030.

As of 2017, the previous year for which complete data is available, the state got 44 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, including 15 percent from large hydroelectric projects, just over 10 percent from solar, and 9 percent from wind power. Currently, the state's RPS requires half of all electricity delivered by utilities to come from renewable sources of energy by 2030. The order suggests achieving this by adding more zero emission vehicles to the state's roads and extending California's cap-and-trade program.

As the Trump administration rolls back federal efforts to combat climate change, California has actively pursued a leading role in the worldwide fight against global warming.

California is doing a pretty good job of flying the flag for renewable energy in the U.S., as the state has just announced it will aim to bolster its climate targets. Between 2008 and 2015, the price utilities paid for solar energy dropped 77 percent.

California has repeatedly clashed with the federal government's policies on climate change, immigration and other issues since Trump became president. Natural-gas plants are used to make up for gaps when the sun fails to shine and the wind doesn't blow.

"If we're going to have these first-in-the-nation laws, we want to see first-in-the-nation benefits", said Rob Lapsley, president of the California Business Roundtable.

Consumer Watchdog and Food & Water Watch say they'll air a television ad in which a young girl calls on Brown to shut down oil rigs.

"Iceland and Norway meet essentially all of their electrical needs through hydro and geothermal power, and have for years - but those countries take advantage of extraordinary geology, making the accomplishment hard to replicate".

KEVIN DE LEON: Today we're setting a marker that will be remembered by future generations.

The companion executive order Brown signed directs the state to achieve "carbon neutrality" no later than 2045.

While California has been a leader on reducing the amount of electricity it gets from burning fossil fuels, the state has struggled to be as forward-leaning in reducing the greenhouse gas pollution spewed from cars and trucks.

Brown signed Senate Bill 100, The 100 Percent Clean Energy Act of 2018, on Monday. Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher, D-San Diego, left, who carried the bill in the Assembly, watches.

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