What does a vast Clean Energy Economy dedicated to exporting energy to other states mean for the local business community?
Meeting Nevada’s energy needs depends in part on achieving its full growth potential. Nevada currently spends $1.7 billion per year on fuel for natural gas and coal to other states – Nevada has no coal or natural gas reserves. Clean Energy Project recognizes that development of a clean energy economy in the state - essentially, aggressively cultivating this new industry, will bolster GDP and create thousands of potential jobs. Clean Energy Project supports fostering Nevada’s growth through developing our vast geothermal, solar and wind resources as well as creating thousands of jobs through commercial and residential energy efficiency measures such as installing better insulation, sealing doors and window and many other programs that will also lower our energy bills. In Nevada, we also need to update our energy transmission infrastructure and transmission lines that will carry our vast renewable potential outside of the state to help create more renewable projects and jobs. Clean Energy Project supports a robust clean energy economy in Nevada but also positioning Nevada to be the beneficiary of the large demand for clean energy in the west and the rest of the nation.
We know that renewable energy and energy efficiency creates job growth, we have already seen it in Nevada. These jobs are direct construction and maintenance jobs, indirect jobs from demand along the “supply chain” and the jobs that follow from the increase of incomes in our communities. In Clean Energy Projects’ initial findings of our economic study, an implementation of the modest goal of 3000 megawatt hours in clean energy exported to other states will have a positive net employment impact due to a recovery of the $1.7 billion sent out of Nevada each year on other state’s fossil fuel resources.
Just as important, energy efficiency creates many benefits to our communities by creating many jobs and new small businesses. A one year retrofit program that addresses only 5% of Nevada’s housing stock creates over 1600 jobs, lowers our electricity bills and increases the value of our homes.
Impact on State GDP
According to a recent economic study, Nevada is already on a path for an increase of $266 million in our state GDP through our existing policies by 2012. If Nevada were to implement a modest and achievable goal of 3000 megawatt hours (about 1/3 of the renewable created today) of energy to sell outside of the state our state, our GDP would see an increase of $540 million by 2025. While creating renewable energy that will stabilize Nevadan’s rates is crucial, Nevada needs to advance our economic growth by tapping into our full potential.
Businesses that consume fewer resources are the stronger, leaner and more agile organizations that are more likely to see long term success. An assertive clean energy economy allows businesses, and home owners, to stabilize our rates and guarantee that there will be no increase in energy rates. Again, Nevada’s annual fuel costs are currently at $1.7 billion. By stabilizing operating costs and making them predictable, businesses will be more efficient which will improve their bottom line. Further, cost-effective energy efficiency measures will stimulate and strengthen the local economy for the long term and give Nevada businesses a competitive advantage.