San Francisco Clean Energy Act, Proposition H (November 2008)
The measure calls on the city to:
- Produce more than half of its energy through renewable sources within a decade. However, it defines "renewable sources" as simply non-nuclear, as opposed to the State of California's more stringent definition.
- Explore a move toward city control of its power. There is no mandate to stop a takeover of private utilities by the board, however, if the study does not result in a recommendation for a public power takeover.
- Fulfill 51 percent of its energy needs through renewable energy by 2017, rising to 75 percent by 2030, and 100 percent "or the greatest amount technologically feasible or practicable" by 2040.
Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, the original sponsor of the charter amendment, said it represents "what San Francisco's green energy should strive for." Mirkarimi said it was "not a hostile takeover" of private power companies, but represented "what should be the indigenous right of San Franciscans." The primary motivation behind the measure is the belief that Pacific Gas & Electric doesn't buy enough renewable-sourced energy to provide electricity in the city.
- 11.4% of PG&E's electricity came from renewable sources in 2007.
- Under current law, the amount of energy PG&E buys from renewable sources must increase to 20% by 2010.
- Proposition H would require the city to get 51 percent of electricity from renewables by 2017.
- Proposition H would require the city to get 75 percent of electricity from renewables by 2030.
Dianne Feinstein opposes Proposition H. So does Mayor Gavin Newsome.
- San Francisco Clean Energy support website
- SF Supervisors Approve Clean Energy Ballot Measure, July 23, 2008
- New York Times, "A Clean Energy Uprising in San Francisco"