October 27, 2011

CA state committee looks at rural renewable energy

Rural renewable energy planning has started as a state committee began hearings today on the “promise of renewable energy development in California’s rural economies.”

The Assembly Select Committee on Renewable Energy Economy in Rural California, chaired by Assemblyman V. Manuel Pérez, D-Coachella, held its first hearing at Fresno City College to assess the opportunities and challenges of achieving the state’s high renewable energy portfolio standards. The hearing included discussion on transmission planning, siting and rural land use, according to a press release from Pérez’s office.

“Our purpose today has been to examine renewable energy development from a rural point of view, taking into consideration issues such as land use planning and transmission infrastructure challenges,” Pérez said. “While seeking to facilitate the state’s renewable energy goals, it is extremely important that those of us who represent rural areas are paying careful attention that we also optimize economic and job creation outcomes locally.”  

The three-hour hearing included remarks from the senior adviser for renewable energy to the Governor’s Office, as well as a dozen panelists presenting viewpoints on issues like transmission planning and agricultural and rural land use issues.

The committee is charged with examining issues affecting the development of renewable energy projects in rural areas of California for the purpose of creating policy that facilitates the state’s renewable energy goals, according to the press release. The committee also has to look at ensuring job retention and creation, environmental protection and economic outcomes in rural communities.


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