SHAHEEN: TO START MEETING OUR ENERGY CHALLENGES, WE MUST INVEST IN ENERGY EFFICIENCYMarch 19, 2012
(Philadelphia, PA) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) led a roundtable discussion at the Greater Philadelphia Innovation Cluster (GPIC) for Energy-Efficient Buildings today to outline why America must invest in energy efficiency for the sake of our economy and national security. GPIC, one of five energy innovation hubs around the country launched by the Department of Energy, asked Shaheen to discuss legislation she introduced in May that creates a national energy efficiency strategy. By incentivizing private sector investments in energy efficiency, the Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act (S. 1000) would create jobs and save businesses and consumers money.
“As the ongoing instability in the Middle East reminds us, we cannot leave our economy vulnerable to energy price shocks caused by events beyond our control, and we cannot compromise our nation’s safety by relying on hostile nations for our energy needs,” said Shaheen, a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. “We must break our addiction to foreign oil, and the fastest, cheapest way to start doing that is by investing in energy efficiency.”
“As a Congressional leader on energy efficiency building policy and legislation, we are delighted to host Senator Shaheen at GPIC’s headquarters in Philadelphia’s Navy Yard,” said GPIC Executive Director Hank Foley. “We look forward to partnering with her to foster innovation and job creation locally and nationally through energy innovation.”
Introduced with Senator Rob Portman (R-OH), Shaheen’s bill has garnered strong support from both sides of the aisle, passing out of the Senate Energy Committee with an 18-3 bipartisan vote. It has also earned the backing of industry stakeholders and is endorsed by a coalition of more than 100 businesses, trade associations and advocacy groups.
By leveraging federal dollars to help companies and families pay for efficiency upgrades to their businesses and homes, the Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act would help our economy reduce energy costs. In turn, it would also create jobs for construction firms that perform efficiency retrofits and for manufacturers that produce energy-efficient technologies.
Some highlights of the legislation include:
- Helps manufacturers reduce energy use and become more competitive by working with states to establish a revolving loan program to help finance efficiency upgrades.
- Works with states to strengthen voluntary national model building codes, to make new homes and commercial buildings more energy efficient.
- Boosts private sector investment in building efficiency upgrades by expanding the Department of Energy Loan Guarantee program.
- Requires the federal government – the single largest energy user in the country – to adopt energy saving techniques for computers, better building standards and smart metering technology.
For more information on the bill, please visit http://www.shaheen.senate.gov/energyefficiency
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