Coalition Calls on Reid to Include RES in Energy Bill
A coalition of environmental, labor and renewable energy groups sent a letter today to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) calling for inclusion of a renewable energy standard in the energy bill he will bring to the floor before the August recess.
The letter is the latest effort by the groups to pressure Reid to push a RES, which requires that a certain percentage of the country’s electricity come from renewable sources like wind and solar. The coalition does not offer any details on what the RES should look like, but renewable energy advocates have long called for a 25 percent RES by 2025. Given the lack of support for a utility-only climate bill in the Senate, the question is: Can a strong RES get 60 votes?
In the letter, the coalition cites the RES included in Sen. Jeff Bingaman’s (D-N.M.) energy bill. But Bingaman’s RES would requires 15 percent of the country’s electricity come from renewables by 2021, a target that is too weak by most environmentalists’ standard.
The letter says:
As representatives of labor, the environmental community, and renewable energy trade associations, we appeal to you to include the national renewable electricity standard (RES) in the energy bill next week. Without immediate passage, hundreds of thousands of jobs will be lost and surrendered to other countries forever.