On track to hit a million solar roofs

Every hour, the sun radiates more energy onto the earth than the entire human population uses in a whole year. By capturing just a tiny fraction of this energy, we can decrease our dependence on fossil fuels like natural gas and coal, leading to cleaner air, reduced global warming pollution, and thousands of new jobs.

That’s why Environment California created the Million Solar Roofs campaign in 2006. Thanks to the hard work of thousands of supporters who donated, made phone calls, signed petitions, and came out to events, we passed landmark legislation to support California’s growing solar industry. Our goal? Reach a million solar roofs statewide by the year 2020.

Today, California is on pace to hit the Million Solar Roofs target ahead of schedule, and our state is unquestionably the nation’s solar leader. The price of solar has dropped more than 45% since the program began in 2006, and California’s solar industry now employs more than 43,000 people.

But the battle isn’t over

Powerful utility companies are threatened by the idea of homeowners and small businesses generating their own energy. The utilities are joining hands with the fossil fuel industry and opposing us every step of the way. Environment California has fought hard in Sacramento to protect the laws that have enabled the solar industry’s stratospheric growth. For instance, we’re working to defend net metering, which allows homeowners and small businesses to receive credit on their electricity bills for energy that they produce on-site.

We’re also going on the offensive, working to build support for a bold vision of California’s solar future. Gov. Jerry Brown recently made a public call for California to install 12 gigawatts of local clean energy by 2020. That’s significant: 12 GW is the equivalent of 12 nuclear power plants. By rallying around the governor’s vision, we can reach our goal of a million solar roofs— and blow past it—by the end of this decade. Join our campaign by endorsing Gov. Brown’s clean energy vision today.

Finally, Environment California is highlighting local leaders all over the state who are moving the ball forward on solar power. Lancaster and Sebastopol have passed groundbreaking mandates requiring all new buildings to be constructed with solar panels. Richmond leaders dramatically cut prices on permits for residential solar installations. We are shining a spotlight on these visionary solar leaders and encouraging other city governments to follow in their footsteps.

By continuing to expand California’s reliance on solar power, we can transform our economy, generate jobs, protect our health, and preserve our environment for generations to come.

Clean energy updates

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SoCal Edison criticized on nuclear plant incident

Nuclear watchdog and environmental groups have criticized Southern California Edison for how long it took to notify the media and public of an ammonia leak at a nuclear power plant that led to an emergency alert. "No matter how small an incident, it's a haunting reminder of the dangers of a nuclear power plant," said Environment California Clean Energy Program Director Bernadette Del Chiaro. "Ammonia today, the next incident could be radioactive and instead of evacuating employees we may be evacuating Los Angeles."

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News Release | Environment California

Edison’s Handling of San Onofre Accident Troubling; California should move beyond nuclear power

Tuesday’s emergency alert and worker evacuation called at the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant is a haunting reminder of the inherent dangers of nuclear power.

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News Release | Environment California Research & Policy Center

Bay Area Solar Companies Lead Nation in Job Growth, Fighting Global Warming

Environmental groups, clean energy experts and local businesses gathered today to release a report that maps out how clean energy solutions can make a dramatic difference in the fight against a warming planet as well as the struggle to revive a cooling economy.

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News Release | Environment California

Solar Water Heating Incentive Program

The California Public Utilities Commission announced the creation of a new low-income solar water heating incentive program under the California Solar Initiative (CSI)-Thermal Program. The CSI-Thermal Program resulted from Assembly Bill 1407, authored by Assemblymember Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael) and sponsored by Environment California in 2007, to create a 10-year, $250 million statewide incentive program to encourage the installation of 200,000 solar water heating systems in homes and businesses that offset natural gas usage for heating water.

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News Release | Environment California

Solar Water Heating Incentive Program

SACRAMENTO -- This month, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) announced the creation of a new low-income solar water heating incentive program under the California Solar Initiative (CSI)-Thermal Program.

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