California uses less energy per capita than any other state in the country. According to officials, California has held its per-capita energy consumption steady since 1974 while energy use per person in the country has skyrocketed 50 percent in that time frame. California consumers average less than 7,000 kilowatt hours a year of electricity. The average American burns 12,000 kilowatt-hours. California is also a leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions while still maintaining economic growth.

Key to California's efforts are mandates, regulations and high prices. As the for the future, California wants to cut auto pollution even more, encourage solar power and cap greenhouse gasses.

Steven Mufson's analysis in the Washington Post examines all of the initiatives California promotes to conserve energy and spur alternative sources. Granted, California has some advantages with its fair weather, but the state is also committed to leading the way in energy conservation and emissions reductions.

[Source: Steven Mufson / Washington Post (subscription required)]

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