SACRAMENTO – Attorney General Edmund G. Brown Jr. today hailed the signing of AB 2514 (Skinner), the country’s first energy storage bill, as “a major step towards energy independence.”
Brown sponsored the new law to facilitate the development of solar and wind power, create jobs and increase California’s energy independence by providing a mechanism for storing wind and solar power for use at times it can’t be generated, such as nighttime. Governor Schwarzenegger signed the bill this afternoon.
“Californians want clean, renewable energy, and energy storage is an important part of that,” said Brown. “This law will help reduce global warming emissions, improve air quality, and will be a major step towards energy independence.’
The law will jumpstart the state’s energy storage industry and lead to the creation of up to 10,000 manufacturing jobs, according to the California Energy Storage Alliance. Companies already have invested in some technologies for storing energy, such as using a thermal reserve or pumped hydroelectricity. Newer technologies include storing energy in various kinds of large-scale batteries, transforming it into flywheels and compressing it into air fields.
Energy storage is important for an expanding renewable energy future because solar and wind power are not available at all times. Increasing storage allows California to take greater advantage of its renewable resources while making our electric power grid more reliable.
Expanded storage will also protect public health by reducing the need for the most polluting “peaker plants” that only operate during peak demand, usually during the summer when air conditioners in the state are in most intense use.
Attorney General Brown has fought to protect California’s environment and worked to build a clean-energy infrastructure for the 21st century. He has successfully defended the state’s landmark clean cars law, leading to improvements in fuel efficiency nationwide, and has worked with local governments to ensure that their long-term growth plans improve air quality by reducing traffic and greenhouse gas pollution. For more information, please see: http://ag.ca.gov/globalwarming/