State’s Renewable-Energy Focus Risks Power Shortages
California officials are beginning to worry that the state’s focus on transitioning to renewable-energy sources could lead to power shortages in the near term.
The state has been so keen to develop renewables that relatively few conventional power generators, such as gas-fired plants, have been built lately. That risks a possible energy shortfall in certain places if the economy rebounds any time soon.
California’s utilities are barreling ahead to try to meet a state mandate to garner 33% of their power from renewable sources by 2020, and some officials are concerned the effort might push up electricity prices and crimp supplies.
State energy agencies recently concluded it could cost $114 billion or more to meet the 33% mandate, more than double what it might have cost to achieve an earlier 20% requirement. Consumers will bear those costs, one way or another.