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Clean Energy Jobs Creation: Will the Senate Do the Right Thing?

"The Senate must recognize that energy efficiency is the fastest, cheapest and cleanest way to meet our growing energy needs."

[The following is a press release from Campaign for an Energy-Efficient America.]

According to a statement released by the Energy and Commerce Committee, House Democrats negotiating a major energy and climate bill have reached an agreement to include a plan requiring utilities to reduce electricity demand 5 to 8 percent by 2020 through energy efficiency measures.  The Campaign for an Energy-Efficient America, a national coalition of more than 75 business and environmental organizations advocating for a strong energy efficiency resource standard, released the following statement:

“In their initial energy and climate legislative draft, House Democrats recognized the value of energy efficiency by setting a strong target that would have required electricity and natural gas utilities to achieve cumulative energy savings of 15 percent and 10 percent, respectively, by 2020.  The compromise reached to improve prospects for the bill’s passage shrinks the efficiency target to five to eight percent – literally leaving tens of billions of dollars in consumer savings on the bargaining table.

“The original Waxman-Markey efficiency standard could have delivered 222,000 new jobs and nearly $170 billion in savings for consumers and businesses across the country, while making it easier and more cost-effective to achieve climate goals set forth in the bill.

“The Senate must recognize that energy efficiency is the fastest, cheapest and cleanest way to meet our growing energy needs. Fifteen percent electric efficiency and 10 percent natural gas efficiency standards are achievable and will spur job growth and consumer savings. Both deserve to be included in any final bill sent to President Obama.”