Anna Aurilio,
Environment America

Visionary Solar Power Legislation Considered in Senate Committee

For Immediate Release

Washington, DC — The Ten Million Solar Roofs Act of 2011 will be considered in the Energy and Natural Resources committee today. Senators Bernie Sanders (I - VT), John Boozman (R – AR) and Energy and Natural Resources Chairman Jeff Bingaman (D – NM) introduced the Act, which would establish a goal of powering 10 million homes and businesses with solar energy by 2020. The measure also would incorporate a Department of Energy initiative called SunShot to make solar power more competitive with conventional energy technologies. The bill would provide grants to communities to help them make their solar energy permitting process less costly and more efficient, and would recognize and reward communities that have adopted common policies on solar permits.

Sean Garren, Environment America’s Clean Energy Advocate released the following statement in response:

“The sun provides more energy in an hour than all the coal mines and oil wells do in a year.  It is limitless and pollution free.  If we are serious about meeting our nation’s environmental challenges and being truly energy independent, America can, and must, figure out how to tap into the heat and power of the sun.   

“As we speak, countries like Germany, Japan and China are moving full speed ahead to develop their solar industries through incentives and mandates.  President Obama said that, 'the nation that leads the clean energy economy will lead the global economy,' and that nation should be America, with our vast potential and dedicated, skilled and ready workforce.

“In addition, investments in solar energy create jobs in a diverse set of fields throughout the supply chain.  Senators Sanders and Boozman and Chairman Bingaman understand this potential and have introduced a bill that can help deliver the solar revolution to America.

“The Ten Million Solar Roofs Act of 2011 would provide critical support for solar power, one of the most important and exciting industries of the 21st century.  Environment America applauds the Senators’ leadership on clean energy, and we look forward to working with them to enact this visionary bill.”