March Meeting Report: Do Pieces of the Puzzle Fit Together? Individual Policies that Make Up California’s Decarbonization Plan

By Fraser Perkins and Ann Nye  —

Guide to March 20, 2022 Meeting of the Palos Verdes Democratic Club

The March meeting of the Palos Verdes Democrats was held by Zoom.  The theme was Do Pieces of the Puzzle fit together?  Individual Policies that Make Up California’s Decarbonization Plan.  Our featured speakers were Mohit Chhabra, senior scientist at the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Dr. Lorraine Lundquist, physicist and professor at CSU Northridge and Al Muratsuchi, 66th District Assemblymember.

The time refers to the time location in the video below. 

Meeting moderator, Ann Nye, opened the meeting with the remarks below and then introduced the speakers.

One of our invitees to today’s meeting was Sammy Roth, LA Times columnist and author of the LA Times Boiling Point newsletter.  He was unable to attend, but I’d like to read this reflection from Sammy Roth to introduce our meeting.

You know that scene in “The Matrix” where Keanu Reeves is offered a choice between ignorance and truth, in the form of a blue pill and a red pill? If he takes the blue pill, he’ll forget the unsettling reality he’s begun to uncover, and go on living his life like everything is fine. But if he takes the red pill, he’ll learn the truth about the world — and he’ll never be able to unlearn it.

Well, paying attention to climate change is like taking the red pill. Once you do, nothing will ever look the same.

The weather, a hike, a trip to the grocery store — you might start seeing it all through a climate lens. Should the Super Bowl really be this hot? How much of this trail is still recovering from the latest wildfire? How often should I be eating meat?  I took the red pill a long time ago.

[From the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report published Feb 2022] The United States is the biggest polluter of all, responsible for about 25% of historical carbon emissions.  And while President Biden has pledged steep cuts to carbon emissions, his most ambitious climate plans have been blocked by congressional Republicans — and at least one Democrat.  As the U.N. delegates were meeting to finalize the report as Russian forces attacked Ukraine, Ukrainian scientist Svitlana Krakovska declared that the climate crisis and the Russian invasion “have the same roots — fossil fuels, and our dependence on them.”  “We will not surrender in Ukraine. And we hope the world will not surrender in building a climate-resilient future,” she said.


02:24  We have three speakers contributing to today’s meeting theme –  Do Pieces of the Puzzle Fit Together?  Individual Policies that Make Up California’s Decarbonization Plan.  The plan is for each of them to speak and then we’ll have them on a panel to answer questions.

Mohit Chhabra is a Senior Scientist with the Natural Resources Defense Council’s Climate and Clean Energy Program.  Today he’ll be speaking as an individual and not a representative of the NRDC.  He provides analysis and strategic guidance to policymakers and other stakeholders at the state, regional, and national levels. Chhabra is currently working on developing cost-efficient pathways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from California’s rapidly transforming electric grid.

Dr. Loraine Lundquist, a physicist by training who now teaches sustainability at Cal State Univ Northridge (CSUN), worked on The Los Angeles 100% Renewable Energy Study (LA100), which was released in March 2021.  This report explores how the second-largest city could achieve a 100% clean energy future by 2045 or even a decade sooner.  Not on today’s agenda, but good to note, Dr. Lundquist was appointed as a redistricting commissioner to the LAUSD schoolboard commission and ran for LA City Council District 12 in 2020.

Al Muratsuchi, representing CA’s 66th Assembly District, is Chairman of the Joint Legislative Committee on Climate Change Policies (JLCCCP) which provides oversight over the implementation of the CA’s climate policies.  This committee co-chaired with Senator Josh Becker (SD 13), enables Asm Muratsuchi to oversee integrated climate change policies on air quality, transportation, and energy at the state, regional and local levels.


04:58  Mohit Chhabra (here’s a link to his charts) – Decarbonizing California’s Economy:  The Bigger Picture & Net Metering

32:47  Lorraine Lundquist (here’s a link to her charts) – Local Efforts at Decarbonization:  How you can get involved!

Dr Lundquist provided us this link to help transition to all electric – and also provided a link to the LA100 study executive summary.

48:13  Al Muratsuchi

Asm Muratsuchi provided us this link on how to track CA’s renewable power from the CA Independent System Operator’s (ISO) website –


56:25  Questions to the Speakers’ Panel

58:00  Steve Goldsmith asked about accountability by DWP and the Utilities

1:05:26  Connie Sullivan commented about Carbon Pricing/Time of Use Pricing and asked for the panelists to comment

1:07:52  David Hall commented and asked about the Carbon Fee Program

1:12:49  Judy Mitchell commented on Vulnerability of the Electrical Grid and why she’s ok for paying more for renewable energy during this transition period

1:15:38  Doug Bender (tuning in from Cambodia) commented on the challenges of conversion to all electric usage and asked about Centralized Power and micro-grids (Dency Nelson provided us this Solar Rights Alliance link –

1:19:49  Peter Livingston commented as a retired physicist (“old fossils”) who cannot afford to publish their ideas asked what’s the answer to his dilemma

1:22:36  Craig Lewis commented that rooftop solar is the future and should be on our warehouses as well


1:24:44  Closing Remarks

1:24:50  Mohit Chhabra on land preservation

1:25:55  Loraine Lundquist on pushing our elected leaders on these topics

1:27:20  Al Muratsuchi made it clear he opposed the early CPUC proposal on net metering reform




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