The state’s largest utility, Arizona Public Service, said it would stick to its vow to have 100% clean energy by 2050 despite defeating the rules package.
“We recognize that clean, reliable and affordable energy is essential to Arizona’s future,” the company said in a statement.
The utility will not have to increase energy efficiency spending or follow other parts of the proposed rule, such as getting commission approval for its new resource investments.
The decision means that Arizona utilities will only be held to renewable energy standards adopted in 2006. They require utilities to obtain at least 15% of their electricity from renewable energy sources from by 2025, though the state’s APS and Tucson Electric Power have announced voluntary plans to dramatically increase their use of renewables and reduce carbon emissions from climate change.
APS announced in January 2020 that it plans to get all its electricity from non-carbon-emitting sources by 2050 and end the use of coal-fired power plants by 2031.
The utility, which supplies power to 1.1 million residential and commercial customers in 13 of Arizona’s 15 counties, will continue to rely on the Palo Verde nuclear plant west of Phoenix for about 25% of its electricity. . It will add large-scale solar power plants, dramatically increase battery storage, and expects homeowners to add more rooftop solar panels to provide electricity.