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Sen. McLaurin votes to protect clean energy jobs

August 7, 2013

On Monday, Sen. Gene McLaurin (D-25) responded to a TV ad being paid for by the N.C. Sustainable Energy Association and citing Sen. McLaurin’s vote against SB 365, legislation that would have rolled back important bipartisan energy guidelines passed by N.C. lawmakers in 2007.


The Renewable Energy Portfolio Standards (REPS) policy as passed in 2007 requires electric power providers to generate a portion of energy needs through renewable energy sources. This strategy promotes clean energy and gives N.C.’s clean energy companies an opportunity to compete and create jobs for our citizens.


“Thanks to North Carolina’s Renewable Energy Portfolio Standards, our state is a global leader in alternative energy and home to an industry worth billions of dollars annually to our economy,” Sen. McLaurin said. “Moreover, businesses across N.C. have spent millions investing in alternative energy in order to comply with REPS. I voted against SB 365 because it would have rolled back these requirements, hurt North Carolina’s reputation around the world, and broken our commitment to businesses and energy consumers here at home. N.C. made a commitment to renewable energy. We should always be mindful of that commitment.”


Like Senate Bill 365, House Bill 298 sought to overturn the REPS law as well, but was defeated in a House Committee.


Senator McLaurin added, “As a state senator, a businessman with over 30 years’ experience in the energy industry, and a consumer, I realize how important it is to promote and support clean energy production. North Carolina companies have made substantial investments to comply with our very modest goals for renewable energy. I voted no on Senate Bill 365 during the long session because I believe that we need to move forward. Thankfully, others agreed with me, as this bill and HB 298 were both defeated. Any unraveling of our current Renewable Energy Portfolio Standards would be a substantial step backwards. Thanks to the Sustainable Energy Association and their members for investing almost $19 million directly into our district and for creating over 15,000 jobs in our state.”