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Governor Sisolak Signs Nevada’s ‘New Energy Economy’ Bill to Drive Electric Transportation Growth, Regional Power Market

Posted by Cayli Baker on Jun 10, 2021

Senate Bill 448 assures new investment in transportation electrification infrastructure and sets up Nevada to lead a regionally interconnected electricity system in the West.

CARSON CITY, June 10, 2021 — Today, national business group Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) applauded Governor Sisolak’s signing of Senate Bill 448,* which jumpstarts investment in electric transportation infrastructure and requires state utilities to join a regional transmission organization (RTO) by 2030. The bipartisan bill was passed by the Assembly on May 31 (vote 32-10), following unanimous approval in the Senate.

“AEE commends Governor Sisolak, Senator Brooks, and the entire legislature for passing this ambitious, bipartisan energy policy that makes a clean, affordable energy system a reality for all of Nevada,” said Amisha Rai, Managing Director at Advanced Energy Economy. “The bill spurs in-state critical energy infrastructure along with renewable energy generation, and electric vehicle infrastructure projects that are all a crucial step in Nevada’s post-pandemic economic recovery.” 

“The advanced energy industry already employs more than 31,000 Nevadans and that number is expected to grow 7% in 2021,” said Rai. “SB 448 will drive significant short- and long-term economic development in the state, attracting additional private investment and creating more good-paying jobs.” 

SB 448’s signing also allows Nevada to lead the western region in creating a regional wholesale electricity market. Regional Transmission Organizations (RTOs) harness competitive forces and transparent planning processes to integrate more clean energy into the grid at lower cost, attracting private investment, and creating new jobs from energy developers and large energy users. 

“A Western regional grid is key for states looking to meet their clean energy goals and ensure affordable electricity rates for consumers. The Western RTO provisions in SB 448 make significant progress towards the creation of a regional grid, which will offer enhanced grid reliability during severe weather events and a cost-effective clean energy transition,” said Rai. “In states throughout the region, interest is growing in creating a regional system that shares the abundant renewable energy resources in the West, many of which will come from Nevada. Nevada’s leadership on RTOs and resilience in the west will make it a central player in market design.” 

An array of business organizations previously expressed their support for the bill during the legislative session.

“This legislation would help build a foundational network of electric vehicle charging stations, supporting a range of business models and equitable deployment,”said Thomas Ashley, Vice President of Policy & Market Development for Greenlots, a member of the Shell group. “These efforts will contribute to the job and economic growth Nevada has seen firsthand with the development of in-state electric vehicle component manufacturing.”

“Enel strongly supports SB 448, which puts Nevada in the driver’s seat for creating a vibrant energy economy and shows strong leadership for the creation of a coordinated Western electricity system,” said Mona Tierney-Lloyd, Head of State Public Policy, Enel North America.  “This bill creates opportunities for battery energy storage and electric vehicles, technologies that are transforming and enhancing electricity service, while creating economic growth and job opportunities for years to come.”

Background Materials

*Note: AEE offers free, complimentary access to its PowerSuite online platform tracking all federal and state energy legislation and regulatory filings, plus RTO/ISO policy action, to credentialed media. Sign up for a free trial and contact Monique Hanis (mhanis@aee.net) for permanent media access.

Topics: State Policy, Press Releases