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Mr. Chris Busch headshot
Dr. Chris Busch, Research Director, Energy Innovation (Credit: Courtesy of Energy Innovation website )

California met its 2020 economy-wide target four years ahead of schedule, and is now working toward the 2030 target requiring a statewide reduction in greenhouse gas emissions forty percent below 1990 levels.  

Policy Recommendations to Reach California’s Next Major Decarbonization Milestone based on a New Open Source Model
Speaker: Dr. Chris Busch, Research Director at Energy Innovation
Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2020
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM Pacific Time
Middlebury Institute of International Studies
via Zoom online meeting software (details below)

Free, No Registration Required

Video Available

About the Topic

California has been a global pacesetter on clean energy and climate policy. While driving emissions down to hit its 2020 decarbonization target four years early, the state’s economy outperformed other major economies, growing from 10th largest in 2012 to 5th largest economy in world today. Looking forward, the state’s commitment to carbon neutrality by 2045 implies the rate of emission reductions will have to more than double. Is California on course for its future deep decarbonization targets? What would be the most beneficial next steps to accelerate the state’s clean energy transition? This talk will present insights on these questions from the California Energy Policy Simulator, an open-source tool for quantitative policy analysis. In brief, additional policy impetus will likely to be needed, but technological progress, the state’s research capacity, and its culture of innovation and entrepreneurship create the potential for policy extensions to better economic performance.

About the Speaker

Chris Busch is Energy Innovation’s Research Director. He works at the intersection of research and policy, including previous posts with the Union of Concerned Scientists, the BlueGreen Alliance, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. In 2006, Chris persuaded four Nobel Prize winning economists to sign a public letter supporting California’s Assembly Bill 32. In another career highlight, he testified before the US House of Representative’s Energy and Commerce Committee.  Chris has been quoted in major publications such as the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, has published several articles in peer-reviewed journals, and holds two graduate degrees from UC Berkeley, a PhD in environmental economics and a Master of Public Policy.

Learn more:  Energy Innovation Policy and Technology LLC


Recommended Reading

Clean Trucks, Big Bucks—California Energy Policy Simulator evaluation of the proposed Advanced Clean Trucks Rule

California’s 2030 policy strategy

Analysis underlying 2030 strategy

The status of the state cap-and-trade program


Lecture Location:  Online, Via Zoom

Link to Join: from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: Sustainability Speaker Series, Fall 2020

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Please note:   We will be filming the Zoom meeting with the permission of each speaker; if filming, attendees who participate in the Q&A portion with audio or video consent to be filmed; We reserve the right to exclude disruptive participants  


The Center for the Blue Economy is a research organization at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.  Our mission is to promote a sustainable ocean and coastal economy (the “Blue Economy”) through leadership in research, analysis, and education.  For questions contact: Rachel C. at or visit or call 831-647-4183 (must leave message and receive call back).