Friday, June 22, 2007
The Senate has begun consideration of its renewable energy bill, Senate Bill 3. As many as 100 stakeholders have been negotiating differences over the bill during the past 5 months. Senate Bill 3 would adopt a 12.5% renewable energy and energy efficiency portfolio standard, and has set asides for the conversion of swine and poultry waste, both of which would negatively impact air quality. The bill also makes it easier to build new nuclear and coal fired power plants (regardless of the merits, they have no connection to renewable energy). House Bill 77, which I introduced with Representatives Grier Martin, Jim Harrell, and Carolyn Justice, proposes a 15% REPS and contains none of these troubling provisions. Senate Bill 3 will be considered by Senate Agriculture and Environment, before heading to Finance and the Senate floor, then to the House where it will receive careful scrutiny and consideration.