Discussions with Government Officials

CEERT frequently meets with state and local administrative officials to discuss clean-energy and climate issues, such as permitting and siting for renewable generation projects and the advancement of new, clean, cutting-edge technologies.

Recent Developments:

Discussions with the Governor’s Office

Following the Governor’s vetoes of SB 619 (Padilla) and SB 420 (Becker), CEERT participated in a meeting with Grant Mack, legislative advisor, and Christine Hironaka, Deputy Cabinet Secretary. Mack worked for Bob Weisenmiller at the CEC and has been at the CPUC and on loan to the Governor’s office; Hironaka was formerly a deputy Secretary at Cal-EPA. The meeting was organized by Dan Jacobson, and was focused largely on transmission and the reasons we and a broad coalition of stakeholders supported legislative efforts to streamline the permitting and approval of new transmission projects and infrastructure investments, including overcoming delays in interconnection of clean energy projects.

Since Ms. Hironaka is new to these issues, most of the conversation was with Grant Mack, who was astonishingly unaware of how renewable projects are planned and built, and in a state of complete denial that the CPUC has caused any delays. He suggested utilities and developers were where the problem lay.

We followed up by sharing CEERT’s three transmission reports, and hope that progress can be made at the CPUC on expediting transmission approvals and construction, but we will continue to explore possible legislative remedies through the Clean Power Campaign.


Central Procurement Entity

CEERT is participating in the implementation of AB 1373 (Garcia) by the CPUC, and we recently at-tended a workshop on next steps in implementation. We are planning follow-up meetings with CPUC Energy Division staff and with the Department of Water Resources on ways to integrate Central Procurement of long lead-time resources, specifically offshore wind and geothermal, into the CPUCs Integrated Resource Plan. We have also discussed the idea of proposing “cost of service” ratemaking for these projects, including identifying costs and rates of return, to support transparency and full disclosure. In addition, we and CPC are working with both geothermal and offshore wind developers on possible additional policy direction on Central Procurement from the Legislature to the CPUC and DWR.


Siting and Permitting of Clean Energy Projects

CEERT continues to advocate for significant reform in the siting and permitting of clean energy and transmission projects at various venues, including the revision of General Order 131-D at the CPUC and interconnection queue reform at the CAISO.

The Central Valley enjoys some 300 days of sunshine a year, with hundreds of thousands of acres of previously agriculturally-rich land coming out of production in the next decade. This fallowed land represents a prime location for the buildout of utility-scale photovoltaic solar generation that has the potential to deliver thousands of megawatts of energy while giving back to local communities. CEERT has been meeting with Golden State Clean Energy on the ongoing construction of their Westlands Solar Park to understand the vast buildout of transmission still needed to unlock the Valley’s full potential, which we continue to include in our transmission research and reports and advocate heavily for at the CAISO. Additionally, CEERT has partnered with the Latina Equity, Advocacy and Policy Institute (LEAP) and Central Valley Air Quality Coalition (CVAQ) to form a coalition to ensure community engagement during the buildout of solar in the region, as well as better understand the unique issues and needs of these communities to inform potential Community Benefit Agreements (CBAs).