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AEE: Extend Calif. Cap-and-Trade for Jobs and the Economy

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In advance of ‘Pathway to 2050’ conference, AEE member companies urged lawmakers to keep California going strong on advanced energy

Sacramento, June 21, 2017 – Advanced energy business leaders went to the Capitol building yesterday to express support for extending California’s cap-and-trade program to reduce carbon emissions, among other legislative priorities in the current legislative session.

AEE is calling on the legislature to maintain regulatory and market certainty for California businesses. This goal would be accomplished by continuing the cap-and-trade system that is now on track to reduce emissions to 1990 levels by 2020, as required by AB 32, which was passed into law in 2006. Last year, a new emissions target was set – 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 – but the cap-and-trade mechanism for achieving that target has yet to be extended. In meetings, AEE and its members stressed to lawmakers that reauthorizing the state’s cap-and-trade program is essential to ensuring low-cost emission reductions and continued advanced energy investment in California. 

“California has demonstrated that leadership on energy and climate can spur economic growth,” said Graham Richard, CEO of Advanced Energy Economy. “As a result, California has an advanced energy industry that supports more than half a million jobs in the state and growing fast. The legislature now has the opportunity to keep the momentum going for jobs and the economy.”

Advanced Energy Economy (AEE), a national business association with many member companies in California, supports several bills pending before the California legislature this year. These measures will create jobs and drive economic growth as California continues to build its advanced energy economy. That view was delivered today by more than 40 representatives of 32 AEE member companies visiting key California lawmakers.

AEE’s top legislative priorities for this session include:

  • Extend California’s Cap-and-Trade program to 2030
  • Commit to achieving a 100% clean energy portfolio by 2045 (SB 100; De León)
  • Dramatically increase the number of electric vehicles (EVs) on the road by creating a sustainable and consistent funding source for vehicle rebates. (AB 1184; Ting)

In addition to these priorities, advanced energy business leaders will express support for bills including AB 546 (Chiu), which promotes increased deployment of advanced energy storage by streamlining regional and local permitting guidelines.; AB 739 (Chau), which would drive progress towards California’s ZEV goals by requiring the state’s fleet to meet at least a 15% zero-emission procurement goal for heavy-duty vehicles by 2025 and a 30% goal for 2030; and SB 242 (Skinner), which would strengthen PACE financing programs by standardizing best practice guidelines for third-party administrators.

In the second annual report commissioned by the Advanced Energy Economy Institute, a nonprofit educational organization affiliated with AEE, advanced energy employment in California was documented at over 500,000 workers in 2015, an increase of 18 percent from the year before, six times the rate of overall job growth in California. New data from the U.S. Department of Energy place the number of jobs supported by advanced energy in California at over 550,000 in 2016.

The advanced energy industry lobbying visit came the day before AEE’s Pathway to 2050, the organization’s fifth annual conference in Sacramento focusing on the challenges and opportunities for business growth arising from California’s nation-leading climate and energy commitments. This year’s event, being held today at the Sacramento Convention Center, features panels on moving to a 100% clean grid; achieving the state’s ambitious EV goals; expanding retail energy choice; the utility of the future; and how California is pushing forward under the new Federal Administration.

Speakers in this year’s Pathway event include Senate President Pro Tem Kevin De León and Senator Henry Stern; Assemblymembers Autumn Burke and Phil Ting; Executive Secretary to the Governor Nancy McFadden; California Air Resources Board chair Mary Nichols; California Energy Commissioners David Hochschild, Andrew McAllister and Janea Scott; California Public Utilities Commission President Michael Picker; and the CEO of Southern California Edison Kevin Payne. Also on the program is a media panel featuring Ben Bradford, Capital Public Radio; Katie Fehrenbacher, Greentech Media; Debra Kahn, E&E News; and Dan Morain, Sacramento Bee.

About Advanced Energy Economy
Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) is a national association of businesses making the energy we use secure, clean, and affordable. AEE’s mission is to transform public policy to enable rapid growth of advanced energy businesses. AEE works with member companies located and doing business in California to help the state reach its energy and climate goals. Visit AEE online at www.aee.net 

Media Contacts:
Susan DeVico, 510-339-1527, susandv@aol.com
Monique Hanis, 202-391-0884, mhanis@aee.net