WASHINGTON, D.C. — On Friday, U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm traveled to Maine and New Hampshire to join U.S. Senator Angus King, U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan, and U.S. Representative Chris Pappas to tour renewable energy facilities across New England and emphasize the benefits of clean energy research and development. Secretary Granholm’s visit highlighted the investments in the recently Senate-passed Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and the President’s Build Back Better Agenda that will create clean energy jobs, combat climate change, and create more resilient and healthier communities in Maine, New Hampshire, and across the country.
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Granholm, joined by Sen. Angus King of Maine, noted that her department has helped underwrite ORPC’s research. The company and the Energy Department are currently working together on several technology projects, funded by $14 million in federal grants.
“They’re excited to come off diesel, and a lot of remote villages are looking for that,” she said, adding that the need to switch to clean technology is growing as the world warms due to greenhouse gas emissions. “The world is on fire.”
Granholm will discuss offshore wind energy at a Portsmouth roundtable with Sen. Maggie Hassan and Rep. Chris Pappas, before visiting a solar array being developed in Manchester.
The Department of Energy estimates offshore wind energy in New Hampshire could eventually produce 3.4 gigawatts — about double the output of the Seabrook Station nuclear power plant.
In Manchester, Granholm will visit the Dunbarton Road site of a former landfill that is becoming a large solar array.
“The study illuminates the fact that solar, our cheapest and fastest-growing source of clean energy, could produce enough electricity to power all of the homes in the U.S. by 2035 and employ as many as 1.5 million people in the process,” Granholm said in a statement.
Granholm said it is time for the country to capitalize on the clean energy economy to create new jobs.
“By 2030, it’s estimated, that the clean energy sector will be a $23 trillion global market for all technologies and products that will reduce carbon pollution, 23 trillion. So, the question for the United States is, are we going to let other countries just take that market, because you better believe their gunning for it, or are we going to get into the game?” Granholm said.
Granholm said the infrastructure bill pending in Congress will accelerate investments in clean energy to help reach the administration’s goal of reducing carbon emissions by 50% by 2030.
U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm touted the potential for more jobs in the renewable energy sector as she spoke outside ORPC, which has developed turbine projects to produce energy from rivers and tidal currents.
Granholm said that Congress must pass a bipartisan $1 trillion infrastructure bill, as well as a second, larger spending package from Democrats, in order to dramatically boost renewable energy production across the country.
"We need both pieces to get to the president's goal, of 100 percent clean electricity by 2035, and a net-zero carbon economy by 2050."
Granholm said ambitious goals, incentives for utility companies, and tax credits for solar manufacturers were some necessary measures to help New Hampshire and the country meet the vision outlined in the Solar Futures Study.
Equitable deployment of renewable energy is a key component of the future outlined in the study. Granholm said that encouraging community solar and investing in energy efficiency in low-income communities with high energy bills are among the Biden administration’s goals for the deployment of renewable energy throughout the country.
“What we want to do is to make sure that 40% of the benefits of the investments that the President is making in clean energy go to communities that have been hit first and worst,” Granholm said.
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