Announcing the release of its 2019 Sustainability Report on June 8, Edison International stated that 48% of the electricity delivered to 15 million customers last year by Southern California Edison (SCE), its largest subsidiary, came from carbon-free sources.
With the announcement, SCE, which is also California’s second-largest utility, is effectively signaling their aggressive effort to comply with the State’s climate goals.
Currently, California law directs utilities to secure 60% of their electricity from the Renewables Portfolios Standard (RPS) loading order-eligible resources by 2030, followed by a 2045 requirement for 100% of electricity to come from zero-carbon sources. The State is weighing whether RPS-ineligible sources, including nuclear power and large hydroelectric power, should qualify for the 40% gap between the two milestones.
The 2019 Sustainability Report states that, of the 48% of the utility’s carbon-free, delivered power:
- 34% derived from the RPS-eligible sources of solar, geothermal, small hydro (less than 30 megawatts), biomass and biowaste; and,
- 14% derived from the RPS-ineligible sources of nuclear and large hydro (30-plus MW).
The remaining 52% of delivered power last year was reported to still be coming from natural gas and other sources (assume fossil).
Two years ago, SCE’s power mix was at 36% renewables, while that of PG&E was at 39% and SDG&E was at 44%. All three investor-owned utilities are years ahead of the RPS schedule, with the California Public Utilities Commission scheduled to publish the official 2019 figures this fall.