California Passes New Bioenergy, Climate Legislation

The Bioenergy Association of California (BAC) said it worked with its members to help pass several important bills that will significantly increase renewable gas production and use, increase incentives and revise standards for pipeline biogas, remove barriers to interconnection for small-scale bioenergy projects, extend the state’s climate and low carbon fuels programs to 2030, and set targets for the reduction of methane, black carbon and other Short-Lived (Super) Climate Pollutants.

According to the BAC, the bioenergy and climate bills that passed are:

  • SB 1383 — A major amendment, based on legislation that BAC sponsored, requires adoption of policies and incentives to significantly increase renewable gas production and use. The bill also requires a 75 percent diversion of organic waste by 2025 and various measures to reduce methane emissions from dairies.
  • SB 32 — Requires a 40 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and extends the Low Carbon Fuel Standard and other important climate programs.
  • AB 2313 — BAC sponsored this important bill which increases the incentive for pipeline biogas interconnection from $1.5 to $3 million per project, and up to $5 million for a dairy digester cluster project. The bill also requires the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to consider rate-basing and other options to promote pipeline biogas once the current incentive program expires.
  • SB 840 (Section 9) — Removes a fatal barrier to small- scale forest bioenergy projects, by revising the interconnection requirements for forest BioMAT projects (3 MW and smaller forest biomass to electricity projects). The bill removes the exorbitant deposits required to remain in the interconnection queue while forest BioMAT projects wait to obtain a contract with the utility.
  • SB 840 (Section 11) — Based on legislation that BAC sponsored, this provision addresses the pipeline biogas standards for BTU (heating value) and siloxanes. The bill requires the CPUC to hire the California Council on Science and Technology to review and make recommendations to revise the pipeline biogas standards for BTU and siloxanes.
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Jennifer Runyon has been studying and reporting about the world's transition to clean energy since 2007. As editor of the world's largest renewable energy publication, Renewable Energy World, she observed, interviewed experts about, and reported on major clean energy milestones including Germany's explosive growth of solar PV, the formation and development of the U.S. onshore wind industry, the U.K. offshore wind boom, China's solar manufacturing dominance, the rise of energy storage, the changing landscape for utilities and grid operators and much, much, more. Today, in addition to managing content on POWERGRID International, she also serves as the conference advisory committee chair for DISTRIBUTECH, a globally recognized conference for the transmission and distribution industry. You can reach her at

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