A controversial initiative to require that half of the state\u2019s electricity come from renewable resources by 2025 qualified for the November ballot June 3. The measure, pushed by the wealthy founder of the University of Phoenix, John Sterling, and his son Peter, faces opposition from two coalitions, one lead by renewable energy advocates and the other by the state\u2019s three investor-owned utilities. Opponents warn the initiative is sloppily drafted and will thwart instead of enhance the state\u2019s supply of wind, solar, and other non- fossil based power resources. \u201cIt asks the right question but gives the wrong answer,\u201d said V. John White, Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies executive director. He said the initiative would lock in the state\u2019s renewable benchmark price, known as the market price referent, considered by many to be unduly complicated. White and others warn the \u201cSolar and Clean Energy Act\u201d also interferes with other efforts to streamline the state\u2019s Renewable Portfolio Standard rules, setting a 20 percent green power goal by 2010, and shuts out renewable projects 30 MW or less. The spokesperson for the initiative was unable to respond to claims raised by critics. Subsequently, the attorney representing the sponsor refuted that the initiative would knock out smaller alternative energy projects. Opponents \u201cintentionally twist, misinterpret, and misapply\u201d the provision that would allow the California Energy Commission to fast track certification of solar and clean energy facilities over 30 MW, stated attorney John Thiella in an email. \u201cAll new plants, regardless of size, which fit the current definition of solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, small hydro, tidal . . . will count towards meeting the RPS requirements of the initiative.\u201d The investor-owned utilities raised more than $1 million to defeat the proposal. Joining them are several business groups and organizations, including those representing independent energy producers, labor, cities, and taxpayers. When asked how much the initiative sponsors raised, spokesperson Steve Hopcraft would only say that $1 million was spent qualifying the measure for the ballot. Under the proposal, transmission siting authority would shift from the California Public Utilities Commission to the Energy Commission. It also appears to remove the renewable standard requirement that utilities make up for any shortfalls in meeting the state\u2019s annual green power mandate. John Sperling, who is financing the renewable plan, is a proclaimed \u201ccontrarian\u201d and \u201cself proclaimed member of the awkward squad,\u201d according a profile from the for-profit Phoenix University he founded. In addition to his renewable energy efforts, he also promotes and backs research extending the length of human lives.