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California Legislature Approves Renewable Energy Rules

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SACRAMENTO (CBS / AP) — California lawmakers have approved a bill that would create the most ambitious renewable energy standards in the nation, giving utilities less than 10 years to receive one-third of their power from wind, solar and other alternative sources.

Tuesday’s 55-19 vote in the Assembly sends the bill to Gov. Jerry Brown. The state Senate approved Senate Bill 2X last month.

The bill’s author, Democratic Sen. Joe Simitian of Palo Alto, said it maintains California’s place as a national leader in clean energy, provides environmental benefits and will create jobs. He says the legislation also protects ratepayers from excessive costs.

Critics say the bill forces utilities to turn to more expensive sources of energy, which will drive up business costs and hurt the state’s competitiveness.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services may have contributed to this report.)

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