Pennsylvania knows power. Having pioneered both the nation’s first nuclear power plant and the world’s first commercial oil well, the Keystone State remains a top energy producer in the country. Now there’s a new energy revolution underway based on harnessing the sun, wind and other clean energy resources. There is no reason Pennsylvania shouldn’t come out ahead in this new energy economy. No reason, that is, except politics.
For two years now Pennsylvania’s lawmakers have debated legislation to increase the state’s clean energy goals, called the Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard (AEPS). Unfortunately, each previous effort ultimately sank under the weight of amendment fever. Too many, too complicated, too confusing, too too messy.
Now the state has a clean shot at clean energy. House Bill (HB) 1128 would increase the amount of solar powering Pennsylvania and put the Keystone State at the forefront of the nation’s new energy industry.
The question looming is: will legislators pass the bill before the session ends or will the sun set on yet another year of lost economic growth and opportunity?
We need to overcome rumblings of opposition in the Senate. Do you vote in Pennsylvania? Your voice can help: Take Action.
Once a regional solar energy leader, Pennsylvania is quickly falling behind our Mid-Atlantic neighbors. Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland, Ohio and New York have recently expanded their solar commitments. You can bet that their stronger markets will look mighty tempting to the 700+ companies currently doing solar business in Pennsylvania. We’re already losing trainees and clean energy investment across our state borders to those stronger solar markets. We can’t afford to sit idly by while others across the country and around the world move boldly forward.
HB 1128 would triple the amount of solar in the state’s solar energy requirement, from 0.5% to 1.5% by 2020, and help put Pennsylvania back on top as a regional hot spot of solar activity. Based on some quick analysis using the National Renewable Energy Labs JEDI model, we expect the solar target under HB 1128 to create at least 14,000 new solar jobs over the next ten years.
Strong solar policy action taken now will bring Pennsylvania benefits tomorrow and for generations to come. It’s time to invest in a cleaner, more prosperous energy future for Pennsylvania. It’s time for legislators to pass HB 1128.
Vote Solar is a non-profit grassroots organization working to fight climate change and foster economic opportunity by bringing solar energy into the mainstream.