A new study says radical behavioral breakthroughs such as “mass conversion to vegetarianism and bicycle commuting” are not necessary for California to meet its greenhouse emissions targets for 2050. 2006 legislation mandates greenhouse gas emissions in California must be 80% below 1990 levels by the year 2050.
Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory and Energy and Environmental Economics (E3) modeled various conservation schemes as well as a mass transition to electric vehicles, then determined the electrical requirements of the state based on these changes. “Meeting the goal requires unprecedented levels of energy efficiency, completely decarbonizing electric generation, and switching almost all fossil fuel use to electricity,” says Dr. Jim Williams, lead author of the study.
To power all of those electric plugin cars, study authors acknowledge the state needs to build the equivalent of two new nuclear power plants every year for the next 40 years.
More –> Contra Costa Times: California energy report says state can slash greenhouse gases by another 80 percent.
The report was published last Friday in Science.