AEE and KEEA React to Pennsylvania’s Senate Vote Today that Puts Successful Energy Efficiency Program at Risk
Harrisburg, Penn., October 25, 2016—Today Advanced Energy Economy and Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance, AEE’s state partner in Pennsylvania, released the following statement following Pennsylvania’s Senate vote passing SB 805, which allows large commercial and industrial energy customers to opt-out of the state’s successful energy efficiency law, known as Act 129. The final vote was 35-13 in favor of the bill.
“Today, the Pennsylvania Senate took a vote that threatens the Commonwealth’s advanced energy industry by weakening energy efficiency programs delivered through Act 129,” said J.R. Tolbert, vice president for state policy with national business group Advanced Energy Economy (AEE). “We are concerned that the passage of Senate Bill 805 will cost Pennsylvania jobs, harm small business and residential ratepayers, and potentially unravel Pennsylvania’s successful energy efficiency programs.”
“This Senate Bill allows large commercial and industrial energy users to opt-out of Pennsylvania’s successful energy efficiency law and will cost Pennsylvania jobs in the Commonwealth’s most rapidly growing energy sector,” said Matt Elliott, executive director of Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance (KEEA). “It undermines successful programs that have kept electricity costs down across the entire Commonwealth.”
“The passage of the opt-out bill will impact a rapidly growing industry that now employs 53,000 Pennsylvanians, and discourage companies from investing in energy efficiency across the state. Up to one-third of Pennsylvania’s energy efficiency economy could be impacted,” said Tolbert.
“In fact, the extent of job loss is unknown, since the Senate passed the bill without a single public hearing, independent economic analysis, or opportunity for public and expert input,” added Elliott. “These are local jobs in building materials, manufacturing, construction, engineering, architecture, craft trades, software developers, finance, and administrative roles, among others.”
“Both AEE and KEEA urge the House of Representatives not to act on this destructive bill in the remaining days of session and call on the legislature to conduct a robust review of the impact legislation such as SB 805 could have on the Commonwealth prior to any future votes,” said Elliott.
Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) is a national association of businesses that are making the energy we use secure, clean and affordable. Advanced energy encompasses a broad range of products and services that constitute the best available technologies for meeting energy needs today and tomorrow. AEE’s mission is to transform public policy to enable rapid growth of advanced energy businesses. AEE and its State Partner organizations are active in 26 states across the country, representing more than 1,000 organizations in the advanced energy industry. www.aee.net @AEEnet
The Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance (KEEA) is a non-profit, tax-exempt 501(c)(6) corporation dedicated to promoting the energy efficiency and renewable energy industries in Pennsylvania. KEEA advocates on behalf of energy efficiency and renewable energy professionals on the local, state, and federal levels. By representing the interests of the clean energy industry in Pennsylvania, KEEA is growing the market for energy efficiency and helping the Keystone State secure a prosperous, sustainable tomorrow. KEEAlliance.org