Thanks to our terrific, talented co-host, Seth Handy, for sending us this link to this compelling set of recommendations to New England Governors: http://www.cleanenergycouncil.org/files/NECEC_EmpoweringNew%20EnglandwithCleanEnergy.pdf
Here's part of the report. We very much like many of these recommendations. We see evidence each day of a region shifting energy choices, reducing or reusing waste, adapting efficiency standards across a wide expanse of commercial and residential properties, pushing sustainability educational standards and investing significant dollars in building a cleaner, brighter future.
We agree with New England Clean Energy Council: The generation of elected reps should be required by every voter to build on this platform of positive change. If not, keep them out of office and on the sidelines where they belong. If they don't get the incredible benefits--economic, healthy, quality of life--of blazing a new trail, then they are unworthy of holding any elected office.
Empowering New England with Clean Energy
Clean Energy 2025 - How New England Governors can blaze the trail to a clean energy future
"New England is well on its way to a clean energy future. In some parts of the country clean energy is
subject to debate, but in New England, it is a clear opportunity. At the end of the pipeline and with no
coal, oil, or natural gas of our own, New England pays top dollar for the fuels we import for electricity heating, and transportation, and our states suffer from price volatility, supply shortages, and money that leaves the local economy to meet our energy needs. For New England, energy security means capturing the homegrown resources of wind, solar, biomass, and energy efficiency – that is, clean energy. Blessed with the intellectual, financial, and human capital to develop the technologies, products, and services that
capitalize on these resources – and sell them to the world – New England has its future in clean energy.
In 2014, all six of the New England states have gubernatorial elections. That means, in at least some
cases, New England’s clean energy future will be in the hands of new leadership. To assist the region’s next Governors, the NECEC Institute undertook analysis of the potential for the next stage of clean energy growth and the policies necessary to make the most of it. It is our pleasure to present this report –Empowering New England with Clean Energy – to all the aspirants to state leadership in our region.
There is a strong foundation to build on. New England has seen notable clean energy progress in the
last half dozen years, with more than double the amount of renewable energy generated from wind,
solar, biomass and other renewables. New England states lead the nation in energy efficiency
investment, and in money saved by households and businesses. The region has begun to develop a
world-class industry creating technologies, products and services to serve a rapidly growing global clean energy market. If fostered and supported, this sector will continue to thrive, creating jobs that range from development and manufacturing of innovative new clean energy technologies to be deployed throughout the world, to local installation of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies that save moneyand meet the needs of energy consumers throughout New England.
New England needs leaders who will champion clean energy and the policies that support its continued growth and contribution to the region’s economy, energy system and environment. The next New England Governors should strive to enable energy markets that drive innovation, scale clean energy in a cost-effective manner and advance our region to a 21st century energy system. Empowering New England with Clean Energy provides an overview of the clean energy policies that the next New England governors should embrace to grow the region’s clean energy economy to a position of global leadership, and advance the region on its path to a clean energy future that creates a more sustainable and resilient economy, drives job growth, and protects our environment. These policies fall into five areas:
Renewable Energy: Renewable energy is New England’s only indigenous energy resource and
is becoming increasingly cost-effective as markets have grown. The next New England
Governors should commit to consistent policies that extend and expand standards, renewable
credits, financing mechanisms, competitive procurement structures, as well as support for large
projects, community-scale, distributed generation and new technologies, to increase renewable
energy and related companies and jobs.
• Energy Efficiency: Energy efficiency is our least cost energy resource. The region’s next
Governors should support policies that create and grow market opportunities for energy Empowering New England’s Clean Energy Future was produced by the NECEC Institute
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efficiency, expand codes and disclosures that accelerate building efficiency investments, expand
programs for deeper building retrofits and adoption of new technologies, and consider new “green
bank” financing models to lower capital costs and accelerate return on energy efficiency
• Innovation: The next New England Governors should commit to creating and expanding policies
and programs to support innovation, entrepreneurial development and market acceleration for
next generation clean energy technologies and innovative business models.
• 21st Century Electricity System: The region’s next Governors should commit to policies that will
foster the creation of a modernized electric grid, with two-way information and power flows, that
can link and serve as a platform for both centralized power plants and customer-sited distributed
generation, while enabling demand reduction, and new innovations and energy services.
• Carbon Reduction: The next New England Governors should endorse their state’s participation
in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and work to strengthen it by exploring options to
expand RGGI to other states and other sectors of the economy, as well as develop policies and
roadmaps for natural gas to be a bridge, not a barrier, to a low-carbon economy in the long term.