Clean energy advocates want to raise Nevada’s bar for renewable resources

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How much of your electricity should come from renewable sources? That’s the big question clean energy advocates plan to answer.  

On Tuesday, clean energy advocates kicked off an effort to double the state law requirement for the number of renewable sources used to make electricity. 

“This is our electric meter, and we are working on getting solar panels,” said Judith Gonzalez, clean energy advocate

Gonzalez says she has big plans when it comes to clean energy.

“So if we can’t use the free energy; free energy that we’re currently having right now, then what is there to do,” Gonzalez said.

However, Gonzalez says it’s not just about putting solar panels on her house; it’s about getting everyone to do their part.

“It’s important for our safety, for our planet Earth that we live in, said Gonzalez. “We have to take care of it because where else are we going to go?”

Gonzalez is backing an initiative to raise NNevada’s requirements on how much electricity utilities must generate from renewable resources like solar and wind.

Here’s how the law is written right now: By 2025, 25 percent of the electricity provided to customers in Nevada has to be from renewable resources.  NV Energy is close to that, between 22-23 percent. 

By 2030, if voters pass an initiative that will be on the ballot in November — 50 percent of the electricity provided will have to come from renewable sources.

Clean energy advocates have kicked off a drive to gather enough signatures; over 100,000 for the initiative to qualify for the November ballot.

“I think it’s something that is relatively easily achievable,” said Warren Hardy, former Republican State Lawmaker.  “And as I mentioned, it is important from a number of policy perspectives to our future as Nevadans.” 

For its part, NV Energy has about two dozen new renewable energy power plants out for bid and plans to double the amount of renewable energy it produces by 2023.

“We’re trying to solicit 330mW of renewable energy, said Shane Pritchard, renewable energy director, NV Energy.  “We got over 100 bids from 18 companies covering 26 project sites.”

For Gonzalez, every day counts.

“If we don’t do something, nothing is going to be done,” Gonzalez said. 

If it passes, voters will have to pass it again in 2020, unless lawmakers pass and the governor signs a bill during the 2019 session that would do the same thing.

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