Tracking Progress

Sector-specific summaries of California's progress toward a cleaner energy future, with links to additional resources.
Information and metrics are updated regularly.

Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency advancements provide the same or better level of energy service (including all the ways people use energy such as for lighting, heating, and air conditioning), while using less energy. Energy efficiency efforts in California have reduced greenhouse gases; made businesses more competitive; and allowed consumers to save money, improve health, and increase comfort. More about Energy Efficiency.
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energy efficiency

Statewide Energy Demand

After the mid-1970s, per capita consumption remains relatively constant in California but continues to grow in the U.S. overall. Californians consume 40 percent less electricity per person because of factors ranging from climate and household size to fuel and industry mixes and the state's aggressive energy policies. More about Statewide Energy Demand
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statewide energy demand

Renewable Energy

California recently set a new goal to increase the renewable content of its electricity from one third to 50 percent by 2030. The state also has a goal to install 12,000 MW of renewable distributed generation. The Energy Commission is tracking progress toward achieving its renewable goals and the status of permitting and constructing new renewable energy facilities in California. More about Renewable Energy
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renewable energy

Zero-Emission Vehicles and Infrastructure

On September 8, 2016, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 32 (Pavley, Chapter 249, Statutes of 2016) (SB 32), putting into law a statewide goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. Previously, he established the foundation to support 1.5 million zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) by 2025 and published a ZEV Action Plan. As part of its work on zero-emission vehicles, the Energy Commission provides funding for plug-in electric vehicle charging, hydrogen refueling stations, and guidance on plug-in electric and hydrogen vehicle infrastructure deployment. More about Zero-Emission Vehicles More about Zero-Emission Vehicles and Infrastructure
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electric vehicles

Installed Electric Capacity and Generation

Natural gas provides the largest portion of the total in-state capacity and electricity generation in California. The installed (nameplate) capacity and generation amounts do not reflect contracted capacity and generational requirements as measured under California's Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). Installed capacity is the maximum possible output from a generation facility. More about Installed Capacity
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installed capacity

Declining Reliance on Coal

Reductions in the use of coal-fired electricity generation play a key role in California's efforts to decrease greenhouse gas emissions attributable to the electrical sector. Coal-fired generation for California fell about 75 percent from 2007 to 2016. By 2026, essentially all specified coal-fired generation used to serve California loads is expected to end. More about Current and Expected Energy from Coal for California
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Reliance on Coal

Transmission Expansion

Transmission expansion plays a vital role in enabling the interconnection and deliverability of renewable energy to meet the state's Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS). The Energy Commission conducts strategic transmission planning and corridor designation in coordination with the California ISO, the CPUC, and federal agencies. More about Transmission Expansion Projects for Renewable
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transmission expansion

Combined Heat and Power (CHP)

Combined Heat and Power (CHP) systems, also referred to as cogeneration, generate on-site electricity and useful thermal energy in a single integrated system. As a result, well-designed CHP systems consume less fuel than would be required to obtain electricity and thermal energy separately More about Combined heat and power
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Combined heat and power (CHP)

Resource Flexibility

The growth of intermittent renewable generation to meet California's 33 percent Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS) by 2020 has spurred several studies to determine the extent to which the system operator needs additional flexible capabilities to accommodate late afternoon upward ramps. More about Resource Flexibility
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resource flexibility

Once-Through Cooling (OTC)

The goal of the once-through cooling (OTC) policy is to reduce the inflow of ocean and estuarine water for power plant cooling. Generators must eliminate or reduce use of coastal or estuarine waters for OTC on a schedule established by the State Water Control Resources Board that considers both environmental goals and the need to maintain electrical reliability. Some generators have proposed alternative dates for specific units, groups of units, or whole facilities. More about Once-Through Cooling
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once-through cooling

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009

The Energy Commission received and administered $314.5 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) funds supporting energy efficiency, renewable energy projects, consumer rebates, and energy assurance planning through a portfolio of programs. These investments created jobs while emphasizing both immediate upgrade projects and sustained market transformation. More about ARRA
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arra 2009

Greenhouse Gas Emission Reductions

Governor Brown is an international leader in efforts to reduce the emissions that cause climate change. Within the state, California has demonstrated that it can reduce its greenhouse gas emissions while growing its economy. In September 2016, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 32 (Pavley, Chapter 249, Statutes of 2016), putting into law a statewide goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030. More about Greenhouse Gas Emission Reductions
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GHG emission reductions logo

Energy Storage

Energy storage technologies capture electricity or heat for use later in the electric power sector (it does not include natural gas storage). Examples include pumped hydropower, thermal energy (such as molten salt), batteries, flywheels, and compressed air. Storage is one of several tools that are becoming increasingly important to help manage the grid as California works to transform its energy system to meet its climate goals. More about Energy Storage
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chart showing growth in battery energy storage in California