The coal-fired Merrimack Station in Bow, N.H. (Jim Cole / Associated Press)

State officials signed off Thursday on a climate change target that critics say will reduce planet-warming emissions far too slowly. The action comes as economic disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to slow the growth of renewable energy.

Meeting via video conference to protect against the novel coronavirus, the five-member California Public Utilities Commission unanimously approved a plan that aims to cut power-plant emissions by about 25% over the next decade — a slower pace than those emissions fell during the previous decade. The commission had studied a plan to cut power-sector emissions in half, but ultimately concluded the less aggressive target would keep California on track to meet its goal of 100%

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