Law360 interviewed Manatt's David Huard, co-chair of the firm's Energy, Environment and Natural Resources practice, for an article on California Gov. Jerry Brown's proposal to have half of the state's electricity come from renewable sources by 2030.
Law360 reports that California already has some of the most aggressive renewable energy mandates in the country: utilities must draw 33 percent of their power from renewable sources by 2020. But Brown upped the ante, calling for that percentage to rise to a U.S.-high 50 percent in the following decade. The new goal raises questions, starting with where this new development will take place and how much it will cost.
"Basically, siting is the biggest challenge to meet the 50 percent," said Huard. "If you're looking at large project development, California has a tradition of not-in-my-backyard. Secondly, the infrastructure - transmission lines and other things to bring in power from new sited facilities - does not exist."
"People are assuming that renewables won't increase rates," Huard said. "If you go to 50 percent and you build out the infrastructure that is necessary to connect solar installations where transmission isn't available, and upgrade the existing infrastructure for all the local small sources, that's going to be truly expensive."
Read the article here.