The American Solar Energy Society (ASES) has announced a comprehensive set of policy recommendations to spur the growth of new green jobs here in the U.S. and is counting on us to alert our representatives.
Under the proposed policies, a total of 37 million jobs can be generated in the renewable energy and energy efficiency sectors by 2030. Additionally, these policies could help reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050 (compared to 2006 levels).
Here is an overview of the seven areas addressed in ASES policy document:
CARBON EMISSIONS: Establish an upstream ‘cap and auction’ system to regulate carbon and other greenhouse gases at the points where they first enter the energy economy. The allocation should be auctioned to avoid a windfall to existing emitters.
BUILDINGS: Adopt the Architecture 2030 target of reducing energy consumption in all new buildings and retrofits by 50 percent compared with the regional average, advancing to carbon neutral buildings by 2030.
RENEWABLE ELECTRICITY: Establish national renewable portfolio standards (RPS) reaching at least 50 percent of total electric generation by 2030. Establish the federal RPS as a floor and encourage state RPS and/or feed-in tariffs to exceed federal standards.
TRANSPORTATION: Establish national targets and supporting policies to end dependence on foreign oil by 2025. A total of 22 supporting policies and actions are specified in the report.
SMART GRID & GREEN TRANSMISSION: Conduct nationally coordinated large-scale transmission studies. Establish national standards to enable smart grid development and require smart grid plans and investment as prerequisites for states to access carbon auction revenues.
GREEN ECONOMY & WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT: Establish an aggressive set of federal drivers for the green economy, including a national renewable energy standard with a solar set aside, tax incentives for the creation of domestic renewable energy and energy efficiency jobs, and a domestic green job corps.
FEDERAL LEADERSHIP: Further establish the federal government as a leader in the procurement of new renewable energy resources and in improving the energy efficiency of vehicles and buildings to reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. Move to end subsidies for mature energy industries.
These policies are urgently needed to stimulate the U.S. economy and to prevent the dangerous effects of climate change.