Capitol Alert

The latest on California politics and government


Will geothermal energy get hot?

California's policymakers are constantly looking at energy innovations or renewable sources that will help the state meet state-required limits on greenhouse gases — just yesterday, Assembly members visited a low-carbon fuel summit — and a hearing today will examine the potential of geothermal, or heat energy trapped beneath the earth's surface. A Geothermal Energy Association report estimates that geothermal accounted for about 4 percent of California's energy mix in 2012 but could be tapped for far more.

Witnesses expected to testify include David Hochschild of the California Energy Commission, Edward Randolph of the California Public Utilities Commission and representatives of the California Independent System Operator and the Independent Energy Producers Association. Starting after session in room 3191.

VIDEO: With two FBI raids in the space of ten months, Dan Walters says Sacramento staffers are nervous about what's coming next.

THE NEWEST SENATOR: With all the coverage of the three state lawmakers indefinitely booted from Sacramento, it would be easy to forget voters also decisively added a senator. Former Assemblyman Mike Morrell will be sworn in this morning after handily winning Southern California's 23rd district seat Bill Emmerson abandoned back in October.

PENSIONER: His push to get a pension law overhaul on the 2014 ballot may be dead, but that doesn't mean San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed has lost interest in the issue. Reed will be talking retirement accounts during a lunchtime Sacramento Press Club event at the Capitol Plaza Ballroom today.

PHOTO: One of renewable geothermal firm Calpine's 15 geothermal power plants in the Geysers region. The Press Democrat/Christopher Chung.


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