California Policymakers Urged to Accelerate Energy Leadership

Written By: Jen Neville
August 13, 2018

Advanced energy business leaders recently went to the Capitol to urge lawmakers to support key legislative priorities in the current session that would accelerate California’s successful expansion of advanced energy. The meetings were coordinated by Advanced Energy Economy, a national business association with many member companies in California. AEE 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 by more than 30 representatives of 26 AEE member companies visiting key California lawmakers. Senator Wiener is the author of AEE-supported SB 700, a bill that would extend incentives for customer-sited energy storage. The Senator has also expressed his support for advanced energy technologies in critical legislative deliberations this year. Assemblymember Ting has worked closely with AEE and its members for over two years on legislation to promote zero-emission vehicles. Assemblymember Ting is the author of AEE-sponsored AB 2127. The bill enables better planning for infrastructure build-out statewide and across all vehicle classes.

Amisha Rai, Senior Director of California Policy for AEE commented, California has demonstrated that policy leadership expanding energy that is secure, clean, and affordable can actually spur economic growth. As a result, California has an advanced energy industry that employs more than 542,000 workers and is expected to growth 10% this year.

AEE’s top legislative priorities are:

  • Support moving toward a 100% clean grid
  • Expand the market for advanced energy through an integrated Western grid
  • Boost implementation of California’s Vehicle Electrification goals
  • Expand Customer Choice and Direct Access
  • Strengthen and defend the PACE financing program
  • Grow a skilled advanced energy workforce

The group released the latest employment data in a fact sheet showing that California has more than 542,000 people working in advanced energy — a figure that exceeds workers at hospitals, and nearly twice as many as those working at supermarkets and grocery stores across the state. Companies expected their hiring to increase job growth by 10% in 2018 across the state. The U.S. has a total of 3.4 million working in advanced energy jobs across the nation, meaning one in every six advanced energy workers hails from California. “This is a pivotal time for California as it faces federal challenges to state public policy that has transformed our energy markets, spurred innovation and led our nation’s competitiveness,” added Rai. “Our next governor has an opportunity to further expand this market and create even more opportunities to keep our economy humming, while producing secure, clean affordable energy for California.” 

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