Among all US states that have 100% clean energy targets, Washington DC’s is the most aggressive since it needs to be achieved till 2032. New Mexico is to join this list but with 2045 as the target year, like California and Hawaii. Unlike the others, which go for 100% RE, California has a zero carbon clean energy target.
- The Senate of the New Mexico state has approved SB489 bill which sets 100% renewable energy target for the state by 2045
- Once officially signed by the state Governor Grisham, the bill will become a law
- It will increase the state’s renewable portfolio standard to 50% by 2030 and 80% by 2040
- Investor-owned utilities will be required to achieve 100% carbon-free energy by 2045
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New Mexico is technically now the fourth US state to aim for 100% clean energy target, following on the heels of Hawaii, California and Washington DC. Approved by the state senate with bipartisan support (43:22 vote), Senate Bill (SB) 489 has now moved to the desk of Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham. Once she signs the bill, it will put New Mexico on course to achieving 100% carbon-free energy by 2045 for investor-owned utilities.
Under SB 489, New Mexico’s renewable portfolio standard (RPS) has been raised to 50% by 2030 and 80% by 2040. For the state’s 847 MW San Juan coal power plant, it would mean complete closure since it won’t be able to adhere to the emissions cap the new bill proposes. It will then be replaced with a renewable energy source.
“New Mexico’s largest coal plants are no longer economic and the utilities, both in state and around the region, are closing them down. By directing new investment in the community where these plants will close and ensuring replacement power will also be located there, the new law will help mitigate the tax base loss and spur new clean energy jobs,” explained non-profit organization Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) Director for Interior West and Northwest, Climate & Clean Energy Program, Noah Long.
So far, Washington DC is the US state with the most aggressive 100% renewables target to be achieved by 2032; the other three – California, Hawaii and now New Mexico, are all aiming for 2045 (see Washington DC Confirms 100% RE Goal). However, California actually targets 60% RE by 2030, for 2045 it aims for 100% carbon-free power generation.