Bureaucracy has thwarted progress of the law enacted three years ago requiring California to obtain 20 percent of its electricity from renewable energy no later than 2017, according to an organization that counts renewables developers among its members. Steven Kelly, Independent Energy Producers policy director, had harsh words for the status of the renewables portfolio standard program under SB 1078. Last week, he spoke on the effectiveness - - or lack thereof - - of the legislation during an RPS conference in San Diego. When signed into law in 2002, the 20 percent standard was the most stringent renewables mandate in the U.S. Subsequently, California's Energy Action Plan and the California Energy Commission's Integrated Energy Policy Report urged accelerating implementation of the 20 percent renewables portfolio standard to 2010. But according to Kelly, "We've gone backwards. 1078 created a regime that's overly litigious and regulation oriented." He said that another "problem is key management at the utilities. Utilities never staff their renewables teams at a level to ensure compliance. They are stretched too thin." However, San Diego Gas & Electric spokesperson Ed Van Herik disputed any suggestion of noncompliance by SDG&E. "We've been aggressively adding to our renewables portfolio, and we will continue to aggressively seek out support," he said. \t Kelly said there was also a "lack of openness, transparency, and competition" in renewables procurement. He also mentioned that no renewables portfolio standard contracts had been entered into before last month, that electricity from renewable sources is decreasing as a percentage of statewide consumption, and that the amount of transmission investment is nil. IEP's Kelly was one of several speakers addressing regulatory and policy initiatives undertaken by Western states, key strategies on how industry will approach RPS compliance, verification and tracking, and the challenges of integrating renewables into the existing transmission grid system. Center for Resource Solutions executive director Jan Hamrin headed a session on the intersection between renewables portfolio standards and greenhouse gas reduction programs. The creation of certificate tracking systems has been very helpful in providing needed infrastructure and establishing property rights, but more coordination is needed between tracking systems, she said. While renewable energy credit tracking systems are seen as necessary by many, such as Hamrin and SDG&E, their development in California via legislation has been bogged down in complexity and lack of political support.