New legislation in Nevada would set the state up to become a regional and national clean-energy leader. A bill recently introduced by Assemblyman Chris Brooks of Las Vegas would promote the state’s renewable energy economy and put more Nevadans to work in the industry.
Specifically, the legislation would increase the Renewable Portfolio Standard, which governs the percentage of power utilities get from clean energy and energy efficiency, to 50% by 2030, with a path to 80% renewables by 2040. This means the state utilities must buy from renewable resources, like wind, solar, and geothermal energy.
With Nevada’s rich renewable resources, the benchmark is not only attainable, the effort will usher in a new era of investment in in-state resources and attract businesses that are increasingly demanding access to clean power.
“As a small business owner, I can see how a revamped RPS will attract and result in increased investment, jobs, and development in all economic sectors, not only clean energy,” said Jerry Lambert, owner of The Jerry Lambert Experience salon. “I am glad to see Governor Sandoval and the Nevada state legislature prioritize clean energy policies for the economic benefit of our state.”
Additionally, bills introduced by Senator Pat Spearman and Assemblyman William McCurdy to expand energy efficiency measures, among other things, would create new local jobs. These bills would widen access to cost-effective energy efficiency programs that reduce energy use and save consumers money, especially in low-income communities.
“I am optimistic that our state may finally get back on track in addressing energy efficiency,” said Lisa Howe, business manager, GERD Energy Inc. “Incentivizing and supporting energy efficiency is the easiest and most cost-effective way to reduce and clean our energy footprint and it significantly sparks economic activity creating job, investment, and commerce opportunities.”
“It is clear clean energy policy will be a priority of this legislature and a strong energy efficiency policy and updated RPS are key in creating a robust, smart, clean energy system,” added Jennifer Taylor, Executive Director of the Clean Energy Project. “Making energy efficiency investment less costly not only helps businesses reduce energy use, it, along with a stronger RPS, also creates jobs, increases investment and ignites commerce within the construction and supply-chain industries.”