After graduating from UC Irvine with a degree in Environmental Studies, Kevin Barker went to work in the Renewable Energy Office and the Energy Commission. In 2010, he was hired as Chair Weisenmiller's policy advisor for renewables and distributed generation. In 2012, he was promoted to Chief of Staff to Chair Weisenmiller. His areas of focus are renewables, demand forecasting, electricity supply, research and development, and transmission.
The California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency. Created by the Legislature in 1974 and located in Sacramento, the Commission responsibilities include:
Forecasting future energy needs and keeping historical energy data.
Licensing thermal power plants 50 megawatts or larger.
Promoting energy efficiency by setting the state's appliance and building efficiency standards and working with local government to enforce those standards.
Supporting public interest energy research that advances energy science and technology through research, development, and demonstration programs.
Supporting renewable energy by providing market support to existing, new, and emerging renewable technologies; providing incentives for small wind and fuel cell electricity systems; and providing incentives for solar electricity systems in new home construction.
Developing and implementing the state Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program to reduce the state's petroleum dependency and help attain the state climate change policies.
Administering more than $300 million in American Reinvestment and Recovery Act funding through the state energy program, the energy efficiency conservation and block grant program; the energy efficiency appliance rebate program and the energy assurance and emergency program.
Planning for and directing state response to energy emergencies.