The Ohio House of Representatives this afternoon approved legislation (SB 310) that would derail the state’s renewable portfolio standards and energy efficiency directives. The bill now moves on to Governor Kasich, whose spokesman Rob Nichols, sadly released a statement this afternoon stating that “the governor looks forward to signing the bill.”
“We worry some legislators and utility monopolies have misled the Governor about the bill’s true impact, which will reduce investment and jobs in Ohio and cause energy costs to rise. The Governor still has time to veto the bill, and Environmental Defense Fund urges him to do so.”
If Governor Kasich signs the bill, Ohio unfortunately will become the first state in the nation to reverse its clean energy standards. These are the same standards that are saving families money and bringing huge investments into the state, supporting more than 25,000 jobs, saving consumers over $1 billion on their electricity bills, and slashing the Buckeye State’s toxic air pollution.
Although the Governor’s office promises that they’ve “rejected the efforts by those who’d like to kill renewable energy and energy efficiency efforts altogether,” dismantling Ohio’s clean energy standards, even if for a “freeze,” will cost the state its place as a national leader in the clean energy economy. The bill causes uncertainty for private investors and the many clean energy companies in the state. Without legislative support, the strong manufacturing base that has made Ohio the nation’s third leading state in producing energy efficiency equipment and the top state in wind-related manufacturing facilities, will be forced to relocate elsewhere.
“A truly ‘balanced’ approach would have been to keep existing efficiency and clean-energy standards in place while they are being reviewed. Instead, legislators and utility monopolies have gutted those standards and created a study committee with a predetermined outcome rather than a fair and honest review.
Ohioans deserve to continue enjoying the many benefits of new, clean energy technologies, reasonable electricity rates, and a healthy environment. If signed into law, SB 310 will undermine the huge economic, health and environmental strides the state has already made.”
- Cheryl Roberto, Associate Vice President, Clean Energy at Environmental Defense Fund
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