Front Porch Blog

Raleigh Legislature Hosts Citizens’ Lobby Day for Renewable Energy


There’s just something fitting about North Carolina renewable energy advocates getting up ahead of the sun – and this is exactly what they did on Tuesday June 12th as they rolled out of bed for the 7:00 AM convening of the North Carolina Sustainable Energy Society’s Citizen Lobby Day.

Why such an early start? Renewable Energy Development in NC of course! Though the waiting hot coffee didn’t hurt.

Given the many arduous budgetary matters now before NC’s legislature, these NC fans of clean and green energy wanted to make sure that the legislature kept renewable energy development in North Carolina (now the 10th largest state in the Union), squarely on on the front burner.

Specifically, these intrepid Old North State residents asked their elected officials:

  1. to continue NC’s commitment to produce 12.5% of the state’s electricity from renewable resources – such as solar, wind and hydroelectric – as their continued development benefits both the health of the North Carolina’s economy and that of its residents. These are power plants that emit no pollution into NC’s air, water and – perhaps most importantly – neighborhoods and living rooms.
  2. to allow business owners developing renewable energy sytems at the request of their neighbors and on their property to legally sell the resulting electricity to their neighbor at a price agreed upon by both parties – without interference from NC’s large corporate utilties, Duke and Progress Energy.
  3. to continue funding the three University of North Carolina “energy centers” with funds provided by legal settlement of North Carolina and the Tennessee Valley Authority concerning the pollution of NC’s air by the Tennessee utility.

Given the economic concerns faced by our state and nation, North Carolina can definitely use the jobs and economic prosperity created by solar, wind and hydroelectric energy development within the state. Combine the health care savings from renewable energy’s lack of environmental degradation caused by mining for fuel with less air and water pollution via the burning of fossil fuels and the elimination of coal and nuclear power’s mandatory toxic waste creation and disposal, and it’s clear that clean, renewable energy offers North Carolina’s current and future generations a GREAT value and a GREAT deal.

Let’s not forget to mention the lower energy prices that will follow the increased competition spurred by entreprenurial renewable energy development through out all of our state – and you don’t even have to drill.

However, some local construction job-creating assembly is required 🙂

About Jeff Deal

A lover of Appalachia, renewable energy, local green sustainable economies, and energy efficiency, Jeff is the information technology consultant for Appalachian Voices and also the Senior Project Manager for the Appalachian Institute for Renewable Energy.


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