Wednesday, June 20, 2018

USA: Regional Grid Would make it Easier to Distribute Renewable Energy

California lawmakers move closer to regional electric grid (AP News)

A contentious proposal to link oversight of California’s electric grid with other states in the U.S. West narrowly cleared a legislative hurdle Tuesday, keeping alive a proposal that has divided environmentalists over the best way to expand renewable energy.

The proposal, backed by influential proponents including Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown, seeks to make it easier and cheaper to deploy renewable energy across the western United States. But critics say California would jeopardize renewable energy mandates by sharing grid management with states that use more coal and natural gas— a possibility they see as more likely under President Donald Trump.

The proposal approved Tuesday by a Senate committee would transition the California Independent System Operator, which is overseen by a governor-appointed board, to a regional group without political appointees.