The bill, which mirrors the Colorado Renewable Energy Standard that Mark Udall championed and helped pass in 2004, would set the first national threshold for utilities to provide a certain percentage of their electricity from renewable resources, gradually increasing the requirements up until 2025.
"Clean energy creates jobs, spurs innovation, reduces global warming and makes us more energy independent. This common-sense proposal would extend Colorado's successful effort to expand the use of renewable energy alongside natural gas and coal to the entire nation," Mark Udall said in a news release. "I was honored to lead the effort to institute a renewable energy standard in Colorado and am proud to join with Sen. Tom Udall to bring this policy to the nation."
"The global clean energy race is increasingly competitive, and our bill is the best way to help America take the lead and build a thriving clean energy economy," Tom Udall added. "A national RES will get America running on homegrown clean energy, create almost 300,000 new jobs and help revitalize our rural communities — all while fighting global warming. I've long fought for a 'do it all, do it right' energy strategy, and a national RES is a critical part of maximizing our country’s energy potential."
The senators' Renewable Energy Standard bill strives to:
- Create jobs and spur innovation in Colorado, a leader in manufacturing wind energy technology and home to innovative solar energy companies;
- Slow global warming by gradually reducing carbon emissions across the United States;
- Spur economic growth in rural areas of Colorado and the nation by encouraging utilities to partner with farmers and communities to install wind turbines and solar arrays; and,
- Make the United States more energy self-reliant through the development of renewable energy alongside coal and clean-burning natural gas.