U.S. Senators Tom Udall, D-N.M., and Mark Udall, D-Colo., have introduced a bill to establish a national renewable electricity standard (RES), which the officials say would create almost 300,000 jobs, reduce pollution and save consumers almost $100 billion on their utility bills by 2030.
As proposed, the bill would require the nation's utilities to generate 25% of their power from wind, solar and other renewable energy sources by 2025. The legislation would set a 6% requirement by 2014, followed by gradual increases thereafter to meet the 2025 goal.
The senators, who are first cousins, first introduced a similar initiative in 2002 while members of the U.S. House of Representatives. Since being elected to the U.S. Senate in 2008, they say they have continued the fight. In 2010, Sen. Mark Udall helped introduce a federal standard that did not pass; however, he did help establish a state-level renewable portfolio standard in Colorado in 2004.
‘Clean energy creates jobs, spurs innovation, reduces global warming and makes us more energy independent,’ says Mark Udall. ‘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.’
‘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,’ Tom Udall adds.
In June, Mark Udall reintroduced a community solar energy bill that is currently languishing in committee.