On September 27, 2006, the Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) held a Congressional briefing on a report from the Western Governors’ Association (WGA)—an association of 19 states and three US-flag Pacific islands—entitled Clean Energy, a Strong Economy and a Healthy Environment. The report, released in the summer of 2006 by the WGA’s Clean and Diversified Energy Advisory Committee (CDEAC), stemmed from a June 2004 WGA resolution to examine the feasibility of developing 30,000 megawatts (MW) of clean and diverse energy by 2015; increasing energy efficiency 20 percent by 2020; and providing adequate transmission to meet the region’s needs through 2030. Energy remains a foremost concern of Congressional offices; this report helped demonstrate the abundance of clean energy resources available and the ways in which they can be utilized. In contrast to the Administration's proposed elimination of the Department of Energy's geothermal and hydropower programs, the WGA report saw enormous need and opportunity for these clean, renewable resources. Speakers included:
Dr. Douglas Arent, Principal Analyst, Energy Analysis, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and member, Quantitative Working Group, Western Governors’ Association Clean and Diversified Energy Advisory Committee
William Keese, Co-chair, Western Governors’ Association Clean and Diversified Energy Advisory Committee, and former Chairman of the California Energy Commission
The Clean and Diversified Energy Advisory Committee report to the WGA details the findings of seven CDEAC task force reports for advanced coal, biomass, energy efficiency, geothermal, solar, transmission and wind. The briefing will provide background on the WGA-CDEAC process and analysis, the major findings of the reports, identify what can be done at the state level and what states are taking action now, and what the policy recommendations are, particularly for Federal policymakers.
In addition to the CDEAC report, this summer the WGA adopted a policy resolution on global climate change. The WGA resolution calls for a full and vigorous discussion regarding the reduction and mitigation of greenhouse gases, adaptation policies and other global climate change measures. The climate resolution stems from a 1997 WGA policy resolution entitled Regional and National Policies Regarding Global Climate Change urging the President, Congress, the U.S. Department of State, and other federal agencies to include the interests and expertise of the states as part of any national debate on global climate change, including the reduction of greenhouse gases, to ensure fully coordinated policies.