California may have a reputation as the trendsetting state that has given the world a range of technologies, but the next frontier of innovation will likely be in cities, according to its new lieutenant governor.
Photo Courtesy Green Biz
"States are laboratories of democracy," said Gavin Newsom, "but cities are laboratories of innovation."
- - -
But Newsom, who promoted mandatory composting in San Francisco and implemented the city's plastic bag ban, plans to use his bully pulpit to promote cleantech opportunities throughout the state -- an even off our coasts by tapping the ocean for energy.
- - -
In an effort to make California a leader in electric cars, Newsom wants to install charging stations throughout California by utilizing the state's network of public rest stops in order to overcome consumer fears about EV driving ranges. He also wants to get the Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program back on track to give homeowners and businesses a financing option for solar panels.
A final push from the lieutenant governor will focus on retrofitting the state's existing buildings, a two-pronged approach to improve energy efficiency and address California's high unemployment rate. Citing 2009 research, Newsom explained that a $1 billion investment in coal would yield 890 jobs, compared to 1,000-1,500 jobs in nuclear, 1,900 jobs in solar, and 3,300 jobs in wind.