A word to the unwise about California’s clean energy

The California Energy Commission recently released its data on California in-state capacity and generation for 2022. According to its figures, clean energy (non-carbon-emitting) sources amounted to 50 percent of in-state power generation. But clean energy production has the potential to improve greatly because large hydro is currently producing far below its capacity and Diablo Canyon Power Plant production has been suppressed since 2019 and can also increase. The remaining 50 percent of generation was from carbon-emitting sources, mostly natural gas.

However, the data also makes it abundantly clear that if Diablo Canyon were to close, the balance would shift to almost 40 percent clean energy and 60 percent carbon-emitting. Only a fraction of Diablo Canyon production will be absorbed by renewables resulting in a large increase in natural gas production, which would be very harmful to the environment and the climate, not to mention our local economy.

Mark Henry
San Luis Obispo

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