BILL NUMBER: AB 1350 AMENDED
AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY APRIL 2, 2009
INTRODUCED BY Assembly Member Blakeslee
FEBRUARY 27, 2009
An act to amend Section 44273 of the Health and Safety
Code, and to add Chapter 7.10 (commencing with Section 25698) to
Division 15 An act to add Chapter 6.7 (commencing with
Section 25580) to Division 15 of the Public Resources Code,
relating to energy.
LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST
AB 1350, as amended, Blakeslee. Energy: sustainable
biofuel resource: voluntary certification. regional
The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) requires a lead
agency, as defined, to prepare, or cause to be prepared, and certify
the completion of, an environmental impact report (EIR) on a project
that it proposes to carry out or approve that may have a significant
effect on the environment or to adopt a negative declaration if it
finds that the project will not have that effect. Except as provided,
CEQA requires the lead agency to mitigate or avoid the significant
effects on the environment of a project it carries out or approves
whenever feasible to do so. CEQA also requires a lead agency to
prepare a mitigated negative declaration for a project that may have
a significant effect on the environment if revisions in the project
would avoid or mitigate that effect and there is no substantial
evidence that the project, as revised, would have a significant
effect on the environment.
The California Renewables Portfolio Standard Program requires a
retail seller of electricity, including electrical corporations,
community choice aggregators, and electric service providers, to
purchase a specified minimum percentage of electricity generated by
eligible renewable energy resources, as defined, in any given year as
a specified percentage of total kilowatthours sold to retail end-use
customers each calendar year.
This bill would authorize the State Energy Resources Conservation
and Development Commission to communicate, coordinate, and work with
specified entities to consider and implement mitigation requirements
on a regional basis for projects proposing to develop eligible
renewable energy resources for the purposes of the California
Renewables Portfolio Standard Program. The bill would authorize the
commission to execute an agreement, memorandum of its understanding,
or other similar instrument memorializing it understanding of any
communication, coordination, or implementation activities with other
state agencies for the purposes of meeting mitigation requirements on
a regional basis.
Existing law establishes the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and
Vehicle Technology Program, which is administered by the Energy
Commission, for the purposes of developing and deploying innovative
technologies that transform California's fuel and vehicle types to
help attain the state's climate change policies. Existing law
establishes the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology
Fund and, upon appropriation, used for implementing the Alternative
and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program.
This bill would require the Energy Commission, in collaboration
with specified entities, to establish a voluntary certification
program to establish environmental performance standards for a
biofuel qualifying as a California Sustainable Biofuel Resource. The
Energy Commission would be required to consider certain factors in
developing the performance standards. The bill would authorize moneys
from the fund, upon appropriation, be used by the Energy Commission
to implement the voluntary certification program. The bill would
authorize the Energy Commission to charge an entity seeking to
certify a biofuel under the program a fee to cover the Energy
Commission's administrative costs. The bill would require collected
fees to be deposited into the fund.
Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes.
State-mandated local program: no.
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
SECTION 1. Chapter 6.7 (commencing with Section
25580) is added to Division 15 of the Public Resources
Code , to read:
CHAPTER 6.7. REGIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL MITIGATION
25580. (a) The commission may communicate, coordinate, and work
with the Natural Resources Agency, the Wildlife Conservation Board,
the Department of Fish and Game, and other appropriate federal,
state, or local governments, including interested stakeholders, to
consider and implement mitigation requirements, including those
required under the California Environmental Quality Act (Division 13
(commencing with Section 21000)) on a regional basis for projects
proposing to develop eligible renewable energy resources for the
purposes of the California Renewables Portfolio Standard Program
(Article 16 (commencing with Section 399.11) of Chapter 2.3 of Part 1
of Division 1 of the Public Utilities Code) that may include both of
(1) Identification of priority areas for mitigation, using
information from the agencies and departments identified in this
subdivision, as well as from other sources.
(2) Utilization of existing conservation programs of the agencies
and departments identified in this subdivision.
(b) The commission may execute an agreement, a memorandum of
understanding, or other similar instrument to memorialize its
understanding of any communication, coordination, or implementation
activities with other state agencies for the purposes of meeting
mitigation requirements on a regional basis.
(c) This section does not interfere with, or prevent the existing
authority of, an agency or department to carry out its programs,
projects, or responsibilities to identify, review, approve, deny, or
implement any mitigation requirements.
SECTION 1. The Legislature finds and declares
all of the following:
(a) California's transportation sector is responsible for
approximately 40 percent of statewide greenhouse gas emissions and
over 50 percent of statewide criteria air pollution, resulting in a
significant degradation of public health and environmental quality.
(b) California's transportation sector is more than 95 percent
dependent on a single fuel source, petroleum, even though the United
States maintains less than 2 percent of the world's petroleum
reserves, leaving the state heavily dependent on foreign fossil fuel
(c) The development of biofuels can help mitigate climate change,
improve energy security, offset rising oil prices, and stimulate
(d) The term "biofuels" encompasses an array of feedstocks and
production processes, therefore each product must be assessed on its
(e) While many biofuels can reduce greenhouse gas emissions with
de minimis negative impacts to the environment, and in some cases to
the increased health and productivity of the local environment, the
production of some biofuels can have detrimental environmental
(f) As a world leader in the development of clean and renewable
energy resources, it is the intent of the Legislature to encourage
the sustainable development and production of biofuels.
SEC. 2. Section 44273 of the Health and Safety
Code is amended to read:
44273. (a) The Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle
Technology Fund is hereby created in the State Treasury, to be
administered by the commission. The moneys in the fund, upon
appropriation by the Legislature, shall be expended by the commission
to implement the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle
Technology Program in accordance with this chapter and the California
Sustainable Biofuels Program in accordance with Chapter 7.10
(commencing with Section 25698) of Division 15 of the Public
(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the sum of ten
million dollars ($10,000,000) shall be transferred annually from the
Public Interest Research, Development, and Demonstration Fund created
by Section 384 of the Public Utilities Code to the Alternative and
Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Fund. Prior to the award of any
funds from this source, the commission shall make a determination
that the proposed project will provide benefits to electric or
natural gas ratepayers based upon the commission's adopted criteria.
(c) Beginning with the integrated energy policy report adopted in
2011, and in the subsequent reports adopted thereafter, pursuant to
Section 25302 of the Public Resources Code, the commission shall
include an evaluation of research, development, and deployment
efforts funded by this chapter. The evaluation shall include all of
(1) A list of projects funded by the Alternative and Renewable
Fuel and Vehicle Technology Fund.
(2) The expected benefits of the projects in terms of air quality,
petroleum use reduction, greenhouse gas emissions reduction,
technology advancement, and progress towards achieving these
(3) The overall contribution of the funded projects toward
promoting a transition to a diverse portfolio of clean, alternative
transportation fuels and reduced petroleum dependency in California.
(4) Key obstacles and challenges to meeting these goals identified
through funded projects.
(5) Recommendations for future actions.
SEC. 3. Chapter 7.10 (commencing with Section
25698) is added to Division 15 of the Public Resources Code, to read:
CHAPTER 7.10. CALIFORNIA SUSTAINABLE BIOFUEL RESOURCE
25698. (a) The commission, in collaboration with the State Air
Resources Board, the Energy Biosciences Institute, and the California
Biomass Collaborative, shall establish a voluntary certification
program to establish environmental performance standards for a
biofuel qualifying as a California sustainable biofuel resource.
(b) In developing the environmental performance standards of
individual biofuel products, the commission shall establish
quantifiable metrics that accomplish the following:
(1) Maintain or improve soil quality and productivity that
includes encouraging cultivation on historically low biodiversity
value marginal land or abandoned land.
(2) Maintain or improve watershed that includes ensuring only
minimal increases in salinization and avoids depletion of water
(3) Ensure a positive net energy balance where the amount of
biofuel energy produced is 50 percent higher than the amount of
energy used to produce the biofuel product, as determined by a
25699. (a) The commission may charge an entity seeking to certify
a biofuel as a California sustainable biofuel resource a fee to
cover the commission's administrative cost of certifying the biofuel.
(b) Moneys collected pursuant to subdivision (a) shall be
deposited into the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle
Technology Fund established pursuant to Section 44273 of the Health
and Safety Code.