Terry McAuliffe, a cleantech leader ("founder and chairman of GreenTech Automotive and a partner with Franklin Pellets") in addition to his political activities, has written a strong op-ed in support of clean energy and a "coherent national energy policy." Here's an excerpt that focuses on McAuliffe's state of Virginia, but could apply just about anywhere.
If and when Congress moves forward with energy policies that support renewables, states with strong renewable policies will quickly become leaders in this sector. Unfortunately, Virginia is not going to be one of those states if we do not strengthen our renewable energy policies soon.
A good first step would be upgrading Virginia's voluntary Renewable Portfolio Standard to a mandatory standard competitive with other states.
Virginia is the only state in the mid-Atlantic that does not require power companies to generate a portion of their energy from renewable sources. Making renewable energy a required part of the mix for all power companies would send an encouraging sign to investors who are considering developing green energy sources in Virginia. By setting mandatory targets for in-state renewable energy production, Virginia could attract talent and capital that is currently going overseas.
What better way to diversify Virginia's economy than with renewable energy design and production, which would leverage the highly skilled work force built around defense contracting? Domestic renewable energy can also create new jobs for service men and women who are returning from overseas and transitioning to the private sector.
It is time to get serious about the future of our economy. We owe it to our children to ensure that the next 50 years are as prosperous as the half-century that preceded them.
We couldn't have said it better ourselves.