On track to hit a million solar roofs

Every hour, the sun radiates more energy onto the earth than the entire human population uses in a whole year. By capturing just a tiny fraction of this energy, we can decrease our dependence on fossil fuels like natural gas and coal, leading to cleaner air, reduced global warming pollution, and thousands of new jobs.

That’s why Environment California created the Million Solar Roofs campaign in 2006. Thanks to the hard work of thousands of supporters who donated, made phone calls, signed petitions, and came out to events, we passed landmark legislation to support California’s growing solar industry. Our goal? Reach a million solar roofs statewide by the year 2020.

Today, California is on pace to hit the Million Solar Roofs target ahead of schedule, and our state is unquestionably the nation’s solar leader. The price of solar has dropped more than 45% since the program began in 2006, and California’s solar industry now employs more than 43,000 people.

But the battle isn’t over

Powerful utility companies are threatened by the idea of homeowners and small businesses generating their own energy. The utilities are joining hands with the fossil fuel industry and opposing us every step of the way. Environment California has fought hard in Sacramento to protect the laws that have enabled the solar industry’s stratospheric growth. For instance, we’re working to defend net metering, which allows homeowners and small businesses to receive credit on their electricity bills for energy that they produce on-site.

We’re also going on the offensive, working to build support for a bold vision of California’s solar future. Gov. Jerry Brown recently made a public call for California to install 12 gigawatts of local clean energy by 2020. That’s significant: 12 GW is the equivalent of 12 nuclear power plants. By rallying around the governor’s vision, we can reach our goal of a million solar roofs— and blow past it—by the end of this decade. Join our campaign by endorsing Gov. Brown’s clean energy vision today.

Finally, Environment California is highlighting local leaders all over the state who are moving the ball forward on solar power. Lancaster and Sebastopol have passed groundbreaking mandates requiring all new buildings to be constructed with solar panels. Richmond leaders dramatically cut prices on permits for residential solar installations. We are shining a spotlight on these visionary solar leaders and encouraging other city governments to follow in their footsteps.

By continuing to expand California’s reliance on solar power, we can transform our economy, generate jobs, protect our health, and preserve our environment for generations to come.

Clean energy updates

News Release | Environment California Research & Policy Center

California leads on cutting carbon: Now Nation stands to follow

Oakland, CA- As international leaders prepare for the United Nations Climate Summit next week in New York, a new study shows that if the United States’ fleet of coal- and gas-burning power plants were a country, it would be the 3rd-largest carbon polluter globally, behind the US as a whole and China. Environmental advocates and Oakland City Councilmembers Dan Kalb, Libby Schaaf, and Rebecca Kaplan pointed to the data to support proposed limits on carbon pollution from power plants nationwide.

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News Release | Environment California

Million Electric Vehicles Bill Heading to Governor

The California Senate has concurred with provisions adopted by the Assembly yesterday and cleared the Charge Ahead California Initiative (SB 1275, De León) for the governor’s signature.

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News Release | Environment California

California Assembly Passes Million Electric Vehicles Bill, Rebates for Low-Income Californians

The Charge Ahead California Initiative (SB 1275) cleared a critical hurdle today in passing the California Assembly by a vote of 46-23, putting the measure in a strong position to become law. The Senate, which overwhelmingly supported the bill authored by Senate President pro Tem-elect Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) in May, is expected to cast the final vote this month and send the bill to Governor Edmund G. Brown for signature.

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News Release | Environment California

Assembly Appropriations Passes Bill to Speed Adoption of Electric Vehicles in Every Community

SACRAMENTO – The Assembly Appropriations Committee weighed in with support for the Charge Ahead California Initiative (SB 1275 - De León) on Thursday, bringing the state one step closer to adopting a goal of putting one million electric vehicles on California roads in ten years, and reinforcing provisions that guarantee that low- and middle-income Californians are full participants in the Golden State’s clean vehicle future. 

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Report | Environment California Research & Policy Center

Lighting the Way

The Top 10 states with the most solar electricity installed per capita account for only 26 percent of the U.S. population but 87 percent of the nation’s total installed solar electricity capacity. These 10 states – Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico and North Carolina – possess strong policies that are enabling increasing numbers of homeowners, businesses, communities and utilities to “go solar.”

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