AWEA continues push for national renewable energy standard in energy bill

The energy bill in the U.S. Senate had and then lost the highly coveted renewable energy standard (RES), which the American Wind Energy Association says is necessary to maintain wind energy development.

The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA, Washington, D.C.) on July 27 issued a statement from Denise Bode, AWEA CEO, in response to the omission of a national Renewable Electricity Standard (RES) in the U.S. Senate energy bill. The RES, which would mandate that a certain percentage of all electricity generated in the U.S. come from a renewable resource, is seen by many as necessary to stabilize the renewable energy market and help maintain wind energy development. The original energy bill introduced by Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.) had an RES, but it was subsequently removed as Sen. Reid determined that he did not have the 60 votes required for its passage.

Said Bode: "We have 60 votes for an RES amendment and will continue to push for its consideration in this bill. Senator Brownback's statements about the RES demonstrate the bipartisan support that exists for such an amendment. Democrats, Republicans, environmental groups, labor unions, and companies across the country all strongly support the RES because it is essential for creating hundreds of thousands of American jobs, reducing carbon emissions, and increasing American independence from foreign oil.

The U.S. wind industry is in distress. Today we announced that with only 700 MW added in the second quarter, wind power installations to date this year have dropped by 57 percent and 71 percent from 2008 and 2009 levels respectively, and manufacturing investment also continues to lag below 2008 and 2009 levels. An RES is a critical component to ensure the U.S. wind industry thrives."