Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday debuted a plan to ban sales of new gas-powered cars by 2035 with a goal of reducing the state’s air pollution and combating climate change. The executive order represents a big shift for car manufacturers and will likely change how many Californians get from point A to B.
So what does it all mean for the common California car owner? Here’s what you should know.
Can I keep my gas-powered car?
Short answer: yes. The governor’s office said Wednesday that the order will not prevent Californians from owning gasoline-powered cars. But the state is encouraging consumers to make the switch, saying that the upfront cost of electric vehicles are projected to match that of gas-powered ones in a matter of years, and the maintenance is lower.
If you want to keep your Hummer, it’s up to you. But if you want to buy a new one in California after 2035, it’ll have to be electric.
Will I still be able to buy or sell a used gas-powered vehicle?
Yes. The order only applies to the sale of new passenger cars and trucks, not used ones. Newsom also ordered that all medium and heavy duty vehicles, such as school buses or freight trucks, be zero-emission by 2045, where feasible.
Can I buy a new gas-powered car in another state and bring it to California?
Yes you can. The order only affects the cars purchased in California.
Will an electric car cost much more than a gas-powered one?
It depends on the make and model. Generally, zero-emission cars are still more pricey than ones with internal-combustion engines, but there are some affordable models. New Tesla vehicles, for example, can run anywhere from $35,000 to $80,000 (although Elon Musk said this week a $25,000 model is in the works). Other non-luxury models, like the Nissan Leaf, Volkswagen e-Golf and Chevrolet Bolt retail for $30,000 to $36,000.
Proponents of zero-emissions vehicles are quick to point out that it’s cheaper to own an electric model, both in terms of maintenance and actual fuel. Chris Harto, senior transportation policy analyst at the nonprofit Consumer Reports, said Californians can save about $1,000 a year in fuel costs by switching to an electric vehicle.
“And, California drivers can save money overall because lower fuel and maintenance costs will more than offset the current price premium for electric vehicles,” Harto said in a statement.
Will more electric charging stations be added?
The governor’s executive order directs the California Air Resources Board and other agencies to accelerate the deployment of affordable fueling and charging options for zero-emission vehicles. In 2018, zero emission vehicles, plug-ins and hybrids made up 12% of all new vehicles sold in California, according to the California New Car Dealers Association. If California wants to increase that rate to 100% of all new vehicles, it’s going to create a significantly greater demand for charging stations.
Is this really happening?
If you’ve been following California’s climate news, you’ll know that the state’s efforts to combat climate change don’t always go over well with the Trump administration. California has been able to set its own emissions standards for decades, but in recent years the president has attempted to rescind that privilege, arguing that California’s policies are too restrictive on car manufacturers. California sued the administration last year over the dispute, and the case is still making its way through the courts. Some, like Kelley Blue Book editor Matt DeLorenzo, say this latest executive order could be struck down in the larger court ruling about California’s ability to set its own emission standards.
“This latest move still has a long way to go before implementation because it directs the California Air Resources Board to issue the emission rules that will effectively bar the sale of these vehicles. Beyond the question of whether or not California can set its own emissions will certainly be the question of the ban violating the interstate commerce clause,” DeLorenzo said in a statement.
The Alliance for Automotive Innovation, a lobbying group that represents the world’s largest carmakers, said its members are “committed to expanding vehicle electrification.”
But, it noted the change won’t be easy.
“Currently, electrified vehicles account for less than 10% of new vehicle sales in California. While that is the best in the nation, much more needs to be done to increase consumer demand for zero emission vehicles in order for California to reach its goals. It will require increased infrastructure, incentives, fleet requirements, building codes, and much more. Auto Innovators is committed to working with California to expand consumer adoption of electric vehicles,” the group’s president, John Bozzella, said in a written statement.
Car dealers and representatives of the oil industry were more critical.
The California Independent Petroleum Association said the order will put thousands out of work and add more people to the state’s already-stressed unemployment program. The California New Car Dealers Association said it has many unanswered questions about the order. The organization expressed concern that the order would exclude people who can’t afford new electric cars.
“While we support the state’s goals to combat climate change, there are many questions and factors that need to be thoughtfully considered and addressed before implementing such a mandate on consumers,” association President Brian Maas said in a statement.
“Securing the Meta-Grid”
Meeting Cancelled Until 2021 Due to Covid
Royal Society of Arts, London / Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv
Coordinated Black Sky Resilience:
“Securing the Meta-Grid”
Assessing Progress; Considering (Essential) Next Steps
Today’s communities are sustained by unprecedented technology, and by the all-sector hyper-connectivity it has enabled:
By the “meta-grid,” which has transformed our world.
However, this new reality is not yet matched by the coordinated all-sector resilience essential for our communities to survive a complex catastrophe.
EIS Summit XI Bicontinental Postponed The Eleventh Annual World Summit of Infrastructure Security, will be postponed until Summer 2021 due to travel restrictions related to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Summer, 2021Royal Society of Arts, London / Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv
The EPRO® SECTOR Executive Committee Roster
EPRO SECTOR is providing a forum for cross sector coordination addressing Black Sky Hazards. The government agencies, companies and other organizations listed below have become important contributors to EPRO SECTOR Executive Committee, and the cross sector, Black Sky coordination and planning process it hosts.
- Electric Utilities
- Other Utilities
- Government Organizations
- Non-Governmental Organizations
- Scientists & Engineers
- Foundations & Community Leaders
- Trade Associations, Commissions, and Think Tanks
- Public Utility Commissions
Facilitated – Consensus – Events Imagined
Facilitated tabletop exercises addressing Black Sky Hazards to critical infrastructures.
The EARTH EX® Black Sky Hazard Simulation Project (the Black Sky Project) is a moderated exercise series – a facilitated environment to consider impact and recovery from severe Black Sky Hazards – addressing national power grids and other critical infrastructures. The project exercises resilience and response recommendations from EPRO and other government and corporate planning initiatives, serving both as a “laboratory” – validating, refining and supplementing recommendations; and as an educational tool – a resource to help utilities and their partners with communication, training and consensus building.
In an actual crisis scenario, utility and emergency agency managers who live through the crisis often document their takeaway “lessons-learned,” to guide improved resilience and response plans for future, similar crises.
Black Sky Project exercises make possible a similar learning process, without living through an actual crisis. These adaptable, multi-sector or sector-unique facilitated tabletop exercises are designed to develop “lessons-imagined” for resilience and emergency response strategies addressing Black Sky Hazard scenarios.
Andy Tang, Vice President – Energy Storage and Optimization, Wärtsilä
Sept. 9, 2020
When all is said and done, we may look back on 2020 as the key inflection point in the global transition to a more flexible, resilient, and renewable grid. In August, I wrote in Utility Dive how the European experience during the pandemic is demonstrating how high renewable penetration, flexible electricity markets will function in the not too distant future.
The recent experience in California offers another glimpse into the emerging challenges facing utilities and grid operators as they work to keep the lights on with an increasingly climate-strained electric grid.
You are no doubt familiar with California’s recent troubles. But the synopsis is this: a heatwave that saw temperatures climb into triple digits had two compounding effects on the power grid, resulting in the first rolling blackouts in California since the 2001 energy crisis. The first was on demand. As temperatures rose, Californians cranked up the air conditioning, increasing demand for power. But the extreme temperatures had an impact on the ability of gas-fired generators to reliably deliver power, with several even shutting down just as demand was peaking. Combined with the evening decline of solar generated power, the California Independent System Operator president called this a “perfect storm” grid event.
What does this experience portend for the future of a grid increasingly threatened by extreme weather events, such as heatwaves, wildfires, hurricanes and more?
Microgrids – the ability to isolate and maintain reliable power supply to critical load centers – are a potential solution to many of the safety and reliability challenges facing utilities today. The wildfire-necessitated public power shutoffs in PG&E’s service territory in recent years offer an interesting possibility. By cutting power on high-risk distribution and transmission lines, anything downstream will lose power. With a battery-storage enabled microgrid, critical load pockets such as hospitals would isolate from the grid. Now disconnected from the grid, that isolated system would then form its own grid, managing frequency and voltage.
While the microgrid concept is not new, it has proven a challenge to materialize in the real world. This is because the energy storage technology required to form microgrids add complexity in the operation, optimization and orchestration of grid assets that does not exist with traditional centralized assets.
At Wärtsilä, our GEMS energy management software platform optimizes the performance of individual energy storage and grid integrated assets. But from the beginning, we’ve always seen our platform as more than a single power plant controller. We developed our software from the ground up to be cloud based where a single power plant or storage asset would act as a single node on a network with multiple nodes. Batteries add significant value to grid operators, but they also add complexity. A network consisting of assets from different technology providers will have different command and operation protocols. Batteries require much more active management than a traditional utility asset. Temperatures must be monitored to prevent thermal runaway. State of charge must be constantly managed to ensure long-term safe operation. Utilities already manage hundreds of thousands of data points. Managing the operation of different battery technologies, with varying thresholds for safety and discharge levels, is simply unrealistic.
We saw that as utilities added these new distributed storage assets that there was a need for a control room tool that could orchestrate these resources in a technology-agnostic way. This was the genesis of our GEMS Fleet Director platform. Fleet Director provides centralized, real-time visibility and control into a global fleet of power plants. It is a cloud-based platform that allows for secure monitoring of equipment, operation history, and alarms from the fleet, power plant, and device level. Combining power plant data aggregation, weather forecasts, region specific market data, renewable and load forecasting, Fleet Director brings unparalleled intelligence to the operation of utility assets.
Utilities have found particular value in Fleet Director’s ability to seamlessly take energy storage assets from grid control to microgrid control. That level of control has proven to be the missing piece of the puzzle in making microgrids truly viable. Having the capability to keep assets on the grid during normal operations and isolate and manage critical load at the local level during high risk events gives grid operators a level of flexibility and resiliency previously unavailable.
With the control that Fleet Director offers, multiple distributed storage systems can bond together and act as one resource. This is the future that my colleagues at Wärtsilä are working toward for California and beyond as more storage is added to the grid: a flexible, resilient, and distributed fleet of assets that utilities can isolate and safely operate during high-risk weather or grid events while maintaining service to the most critical load.
What do regulators want most from grid modernization proposals? A compelling business case
The following is a contributed article by Abigail Anthony, a commissioner with the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission.
Some utilities are seeking regulators’ preapproval of massive grid modernization projects, including advanced metering functionality. Near-term preapproval to invest in broad grid-modernization projects will not occur unless utilities focus on developing — jurisdiction by jurisdiction — the most critical requirement for regulatory preapproval: a compelling business case.
Regulators are not typically the entity making investment decisions. Traditionally, utility executives make investment decisions. Later, regulators allow cost recovery in rates if investments can be shown to be prudent and used and useful (among other requirements). This system provides essential ratepayer protection, but the risk of disallowance can render utilities reluctant to make capital-intensive investments.
Due to the nature of grid modernization investments — expensive, hard-to-quantify benefits, rapidly changing technology, complicated in function — utilities are understandably reluctant to take on the burden of proof in an after-the-fact review that these investments were prudent and are used and useful. By asking for some form of pre-authorization, utilities are shifting the risk of their investment decisions away from shareholders and onto regulators, and ultimately, the ratepayers.
Regulators should, at a minimum, review these requests like prudent potential business investors, not like innovators.
There is broad enthusiasm (and high expectations) for grid modernization and its potential to deliver a more flexible, reliable, resilient, secure and sustainable electric system. Observing all this enthusiasm, utilities might think that regulatory approval of grid modernization investments would come easily. Meanwhile, stakeholders may be frustrated by regulatory processes and principles they perceive as unsuitable and standing in the way of an advanced electric grid that will help achieve our most important policy goals.
As a consumer, I’m excited about the potential of grid modernization and frustrated by how difficult it is to advance. As a regulator, I am steadfast in what I need to conduct my duty.
Enthusiasm and frustrations will not reduce the need for the evidence regulators require before approving billions of dollars in investments to be recovered in monopoly rates. Utility regulators cannot be sold on visionary rhetoric that is better suited for other forums. Regulators need what any prudent investor needs: a clear, complete and well-evidenced business case.
Here are the key components of a utility’s business case to its regulators: need, value and accountability.
Utilities must establish that there is or will be an unmet need for the investment. Will the investment solve a power system problem, address a statutory requirement, or meet customer demands? The business case should describe the functionalities the utility seeks, the options considered, and justify the preferred solution. The centerpiece of this case should be a clear and reasoned rejection of the “do nothing” scenario.
When faced with a request for preapproval, regulators will be keenly aware they are making an investment decision with someone else’s money and resources. If the business case leaves regulators believing that doing nothing is a viable and prudent decision, utilities and stakeholders should expect many regulators to choose that path.
To demonstrate the value of the investment, the business case should provide what the regulators consider a full and appropriate benefit-cost analysis.
The surest way to convince me an investment has value is to provide quantitative evidence that the proposed investment will reduce the cost of the power system and save customers money on their electric bills. My jurisdiction also considers benefits and costs outside the power system, such as the societal costs of greenhouse gas emissions. These benefits and costs are important to consider, but they are only part of demonstrating value, which is only part of a business case.
Utilities and stakeholders should not expect that projects will be approved primarily or solely on the strength of societal benefits. If the value of an investment is predicated on societal benefits, utilities may require a stronger needs case to gain regulators’ approval. Otherwise, if an investment provides no power system value and meets no power system need, of what use is it to ratepayers?
Importantly, the business case should explain what is within the utility’s control and where the utility can and cannot be held accountable. A good business case should present transparent and meaningful accountability for the success of what is within the utility’s control. If regulators are going to step in the shoes of the investor, preapprove investments, or relax post-investment reviews, there must be an equal trade-off with predetermining the responsibility for certain outcomes and the consequence if these outcomes are not provided.
In fairness to ratepayers, the model of preapproving utility investments should come with preapproval of firm, meaningful accountability. Here is where there is work for stakeholders; rather than aid the utility in selling grid modernization to regulators, stakeholders should independently make sure the utility’s plan will meet their expectations on a reasonable timeline. Otherwise, ratepayers may not get what they paid for.
Grid modernization has the potential to create a more reliable and sustainable power system, and it carries the risk that customers are left paying for a gold-plated system that doesn’t deliver on its promises. The stakes are too high for regulators to take bets on grid modernization; a business case should eliminate concern that a vote to preapprove an investment plan is a gamble.
The bottom line is that regulators should not let the utility off the hook to demonstrate that their investment plan is prudent and investments will be used and useful. Just as importantly, if the recovery mechanism shifts investment risks from the utility to the ratepayers, regulators should hold the utility accountable to the promises of a modern grid. A good business case will demonstrate these requirements to regulators.
Sonoma Clean Power offers Clean Energy Solutions at high prices through the participation in harvesting/fracking the Geothermal energy a Plant that PG&E and the Department of Energy over see, in Northern California.. This plant causes daily earthquakes, along with acid rain and midst. The toxins emitted into humans and animals is excreted in the urine and causes concrete and rebar to degrade in wastewater treatment plants.
Just imagine what this corrosion is doing to buildings, homes, bridges, plumbing, water systems, and more.
“Sonoma Clean Power” <email@example.com>
Subject: Extreme Heat Storm
Date: September 5, 2020 at 1:55:02 PM PDT
Flex Alert for California is in Effect Dear Community, Due to the extreme heat storm, Sonoma and Mendocino Counties are being called on to again help California avoid rotating power outages this holiday weekend. We ask you to please help the grid operators at CAISO by conserving energy. For today through Labor Day: Before 3 p.m., please: Pre-cool your houseDo laundryRun the dishwasherCharge your electric vehicleCharge laptops and phonesSet pool pumps to run in the early morning and late at night
Between 3 p.m. and 9 p.m., please: Set air conditioning to 78 degrees or higher, if health permitsAvoid using major appliancesTurn off all unnecessary lightsUnplug devices or turn off power stripsClose blinds and drapesLimit time the refrigerator is open
SCP is also monitoring weather forecasts, and a high wind event may occur between Monday night and Wednesday night, creating a risk that PG&E may call a Public Safety Power Shutoff. Please check pge.com/psps on Sunday and Monday to learn more, as we get closer. Finally, in these difficult times, please help us get these important messages out to your friends and neighbors so we can all prepare and be safe. Thank you, Chief Executive Officer
SCP is here to help. If you have any questions or comments, you can always reach us by calling 1 (855) 202-2139 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM PST, Monday through Friday, or emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Email Us Sonoma Clean Power
50 Santa Rosa Ave., 5th Floor
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BNP Paribas, Ørsted, Google Earth on Using Data to Combat Climate Change
September 14th, 2020, 11:49 AM PDT
Mark Lewis, Global Head of Sustainability Research, BNP Paribas Asset Management; Niels Strange Peulicke-Andersen, Head of ESG Accounting, Ørsted; Carlo Buontemp, Director of Copernicus Climate Change Service, ECMWF; and Rebecca Moore, Director of Google Earth speak with Bloomberg’s Eric Roston at the Bloomberg Green virtual event about the ways in which data is being collected and deployed in the fight against climate change. (Source: Bloomberg)