Noah Long, Legal Director, Western Energy Project, Energy & Transportation Program; and Clean Energy Counsel, Land & Wildlife Program, San Francisco
Critical votes in The Colorado legislature late Friday night and yesterday represent yet another victory for renewable energy despite a national drive by the fossil fuel industry to roll back standards supporting increased clean power sources like wind and solar.
The Colorado House voted to increase rural renewable energy to 20 percent, doubling access for 100,000 Colorado customers. A version of the bill had already passed the Senate and is supported by Governor John Hickenlooper. A final vote is still necessary before it gets to the governor’s desk, but after these decisive votes, it should become law.
The move will bring clean energy, jobs and economic opportunity to rural Colorado. The increase could result in as many as 10,000 new wind, solar and renewable jobs.
The win for renewable energy in the heart of the Rockies sends a clear national message. Despite the fossil fuel industry’s attempt to roll back renewable energy standards around the country that require utilities to provide an increasing percentage of their power from renewable resources, voters continue to want more clean energy. Roll back attempts have failed in Kansas and North Carolina (more on NC, here). In Arizona, a lawmaker withdrew his proposal to reduce the renewables requirement on that state’s utilities.
Colorado — which will now get 20 to 30 percent of its energy from clean sources — is on pace to have the second highest renewable energy standard in the country- only behind California.Share on Facebook