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CA bill would fast track new gas-fired electricity to replace Diablo Canyon

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Senate Bill 1119, legislation that would permit the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to take into consideration "the need for the new or substantially modified gas plant as it relates to the provision of reliable electrical service" into account when granting licenses for new gas-fired power plants, has been referred to the Senate Utilities and Energy Committee for consideration. SB-1119 was introduced by Senator Monique Limón (D-19) in February.

The bill, stemming from reliability concerns from the state grid's increasing reliance on intermittent solar and wind sources, is intended to speed approval of licenses for new gas plants and capacity additions to existing ones. The bill was introduced in advance of the retirement of Diablo Canyon (nuclear) Power Plant, which like other baseload plants, helps to maintain frequency stability on California's electricity grid.

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Gene Nelson's picture
Gene Nelson on Apr 6, 2022

Fossil fuel interests dominate California's government. Apparently, "big fossil" knows the appropriate palms to grease as there is broad public support for power that doesn't cause air pollution in California or nearby states.

Joe Deely's picture
Joe Deely on Apr 7, 2022

The text for this bill is only a couple of paragraphs... I have included below for those who would like to read. 

As for the status of NG plants in CA - here are the new NG plants scheduled to come online over the next few years according to EIA data and the NG plants scheduled to be retired according to EIA.

New plants = 63 MW

Retired = 4,029 MW

 

New Plants:

Retirements:

 


SB 1119, as amended, Limón. Public utilities: gas corporations: gas distribution infrastructure: repair or replacement. plants: new construction or substantial modification.
Existing law vests the Public Utilities Commission with regulatory authority over public utilities, including gas corporations. Existing law prohibits a gas corporation from constructing a gas plant, as defined, or an extension of a gas plant without having first obtained from the commission a certificate that the present or future public convenience and necessity requires or will require that construction.
This bill would authorize the commission, in issuing a certificate for the construction of a new gas plant or a substantial modification of an existing gas plant, to take into consideration the need for the new gas plant or substantially modified gas plant as it relates to the provision of safe, reliable, and affordable electrical or gas service, the state’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction target, and the environmental impact of the construction, including impacts on surrounding communities.

 

SECTION 1.

 Section 1001.6 is added to the Public Utilities Code, to read:

1001.6.

 In issuing a certificate for the construction of a new gas plant or a substantial modification of an existing gas plant, the commission may take into consideration both of the following:
(a) The need for the new or substantially modified gas plant as it relates to the provision of safe, reliable, and affordable electrical or gas service, and the state’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction target set forth in Section 38566 of the Health and Safety Code.
(b) The environmental impacts of the new or substantially modified gas plant, including impacts on the surrounding communities.

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