Patrick-Murray Administration's "Trailblazing Energy Initiatives" Showcased at Upcoming National Energy Meeting in Boston
National Association of State Energy Officials Annual Meeting will feature EEA Secretary Bowles, DOER Commissioner Giudice on energy efficiency, renewable energy, and clean energy jobs
The conference takes place September 28-October 1 at the Sheraton Boston Hotel.
"Under Governor Patrick's leadership, Massachusetts is investing more per capita in energy efficiency than any other state, and we're on track to increase installed wind power ten-fold compared to four years ago and solar power by a factor of 20 - a stunning achievement that has nearly tripled the number of jobs in the Massachusetts solar industry," said Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Ian Bowles. "I welcome the opportunity to let the rest of the country in on the clean energy success story we have here."
Secretary Bowles is scheduled to deliver the conference keynote address entitled, "Massachusetts: Advancing Trailblazing Energy Initiatives," at 8:15 a.m. on Wednesday, September 29. Presentations and panels during the four-day meeting will include several other Massachusetts energy officials and companies, including Department of Energy Resources (DOER) Commissioner Phil Giudice, who chairs NASEO's board of directors and will provide the conference welcome and opening remarks.
"We are pulling out all the stops here as we work toward Governor Patrick's bold vision for a clean energy future," Commissioner Giudice said. "Given all that we have already accomplished - from support for renewable energy to nation-leading energy efficiency - Massachusetts is a fitting venue for a national meeting focused on new paradigms for energy generation, use and storage. I am excited and proud to welcome to Boston my colleagues from energy offices across the US."
Growing the clean energy sector is a hallmark of the Patrick-Murray administration. Last January, the Department of Public Utilities approved three-year energy efficiency plans hammered out by the administration and Attorney General Martha Coakley's office, which commit Massachusetts investor-owned electric and natural gas utilities to investing more per capita in efficiency measures for ratepayers than any other state in the US. This three-year $2 billion investment is expected to yield a $6 billion savings for Massachusetts citizens and businesses over the life of the measures installed, and put Massachusetts on track to meet roughly 30 percent of its anticipated energy needs through efficiency by 2020.
On the generation side, by the end of this year, Massachusetts will have installed or under contract over 60 megawatts (MW) of solar power, a nearly 20-fold increase over the 3.5 MW installed statement when Governor Patrick took office. This growth has catalyzed a near tripling in employment in the Commonwealth's solar sector - from approximately 1,200 jobs in 2007 to 3,000 expected by the end of 2010, according to a recent survey conducted by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center. The number of firms involved in solar energy has jumped from 30 in 2007 to approximately 200 today.
During the same timeframe, wind power has increased tenfold, from 3.1 MW in 2007 to over 30 MW by the end of this year. Massachusetts has completed all necessary state approvals for Cape Wind, which is expected to be the country's first offshore wind farm - making the Bay State the hub for a new US industry - and the Patrick-Murray administration landed a $25 million federal stimulus grant to construct a Wind Technology Testing Center (WTTC) in Charlestown. Now under construction, the WTTC will test the next generation of wind turbine blades - further boosting Massachusetts's place as a leader in the industry. Wind energy companies that have already chosen to locate here include manufacturers such as FloDesign, American Superconductor, and Vestas Power Systems, and developers and installers such as First Wind and Solaya Energy.
"Massachusetts is a leader in energy innovation. NASEO members are excited to convene in Boston to engage with energy experts from within the state, as well as representatives from the 56 state and territory energy offices, the U.S. Department of Energy, and the private sector," said NASEO Executive Director David Terry. "Our hosts, Commissioner Giudice and his staff of the Department of Energy Resources, have been key to ensuring a robust agenda, resulting in historic attendance levels for the event."
Among conference panels and presentations featuring Massachusetts officials and companies are sessions on financing energy efficiency building retrofits, advancing energy infrastructure and reliability, energy security issues, technology for benchmarking building energy usage, state energy offices' use of federal stimulus investments, and clean energy R & D. US Department of Energy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Cathy Zoi will deliver a keynote address at 11:45 a.m. on Wednesday, September 29.