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Major Renewable Developer Promises Investment If an RES Passes

Renewable energy advocates are touting recent comments by the CEO of NextEra Energy as evidence that a renewable energy mandate will spur investment and create jobs.

Lew Hay, the head of NextEra, the country’s largest renewable energy developer, promised to invest $2.5 billion a year in wind and solar energy if a renewable energy standard passes. And he suggested that investment would create as many as 40,000 new jobs in the five years after the investment is made.

An RES would require that a certain percentage of the country’s electricity come from renewable energy sources like wind and solar. Reid told reporters yesterday that an RES was still on the table for inclusion in an energy and oil spill response bill he hopes to bring to the floor after the mid-term elections.

According to Hay:

Sen. Reid’s comments are welcome news. An RES is essential to keep the renewables industry growing strong in the United States. With an RES, we estimate that we would invest approximately $1 billion more per year in wind and $1.5 billion in solar. That would translate into roughly 40,000 jobs over the next five years. My message to the Senate is simple: With a national RES, we will invest billions of additional dollars and create tens of thousands of additional jobs. All that is necessary for that to happen is for the Senate to turn the Majority Leader’s words into action.

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