San Francisco, Calif. – Audubon California Executive Director Sarah Rose this morning hailed the passage of Senate Bill 100 in the State Assembly last night as a major victory in the state’s quest to address the mounting challenges of climate change.
“Californians don’t have to look far to see how the shifting climate is beginning to change our state. Today we are able to thank and recognize our leaders in Sacramento who are ready and willing to take bold steps to address climate threats,” she said. “Not only does SB 100 accelerate our path to a clean energy future, but it will also have immediate impacts on air quality and environment health.”
SB 100 sets an overall target of 100% carbon-free energy for California by 2045. The bill needs to pass a concurrence vote in the State Senate before it goes to the Governor’s desk.
Audubon California has been an active supporter of the legislation since it was first introduced in 2017. The organization lobbied heavily in the Capitol, and organized its activists to press their local legislators for support.
According to Audubon researchers, 314 North American birds will be at greater risk of extinction due to climate change over the next 80 years, including 170 bird species that occur in California. Birds are excellent indicators of environmental health, for other wildlife and people.
“California enjoys one of most beautiful and diverse collections of birds in North America,” added Rose. “We also have some of the most threatened communities and landscapes. We need to take this bold action today to protect our families and our natural treasures for future generations.”
Authored by State Senator Kevin de León, SB 100 is the latest in a series of legislative proposals that build on the state’s landmark goals for greenhouse gas reduction set in 2006 under the Global Warming Solutions Act. To achieve the goal of 100% carbon-free energy by 2045, SB 100 accelerates targets set in 2015 legislation for 50% clean renewable energy by 2030. SB 100 moves this deadline to 2026 and establishes a new RPS benchmark of 60% by 2030.
California has already demonstrated its ability to hit its carbon-free energy goals. Just last month, the California Energy Commission announced that the state is a full four years ahead of its goals to reduce carbon emissions. The state already gets more than 30% percent of its electric retail sales coming from renewable sources such as wind, solar, geothermal, and small hydroelectric – and that percentage is growing fast.
About Audubon California
Audubon California is building a better future for California by bringing people together to appreciate, enjoy and protect our spectacular outdoor treasures. With more than 350,000 members and supporters in California and an affiliated 48 local Audubon chapters, Audubon California is a field program of the National Audubon Society. More information is available at ca.audubon.org.