Bipartisan Group Highlights Wind Energy, Need for Federal Action
In Washington, D.C. today, governors from the 23 states that make up the Governors’ Wind Energy Coalition released a report outlining the benefits of wind energy for their states and the country. At the crux of the governors' policy recommendations is a national renewable electricity standard.
The report shows that a national renewable electricity standard would be an important step toward solving global warming and revitalizing our economy. To date, 28 states and the District of Columbia have passed renewable electricity standards, with California requiring 33 percent.
The report itself included several clean energy highlights:
- America can get 20% of its electricity from wind energy by 2030 at little ratepayer cost;
- Getting 20% of our electricity from wind by 2030 will create 500,000 jobs in America;
- Rural landowners will accrue “wind royalties” of up to $600 million;
- 12 specific projects that created nearly 5,500 manufacturing jobs around the country.
The Governors also penned a letter to President Obama (pdf), in which they voiced their support to the energy independence leg of Obama's clean energy platform by stressing the importance of wind power and the role it has played in their own states. The governors write:
"As a bipartisan group of 23 governors from diverse regions of the nation, we share a common concern that our dependence on imported energy sources too greatly risks the nation’s energy and economic security. We offer our assistance in working with your Administration to achieve one of the principal goals identified during the campaign — energy independence and increasing the role that wind energy plays in meeting this challenge."
While the clean component of the governors' support for wind energy wasn't ignored altogether, the tone of the letter was firmly planted in the energy independence and economic growth camp. A camp that, in theory, should encourage more bipartisan support. But less than half is not exactly overwhelming support.