The Sustainability Buzz

Governor Wolf’s New Budget Includes Energy Efficiency and Alternative Energy Programs

Tucked into Governor Wolf’s proposed budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2015, is a $675 million bond program that, among other things, supports investment in infrastructure, energy and technology. The bond program includes a $225 million initiative to ensure a comprehensive energy portfolio that supports gas, coal, oil and renewable resources, as well as encouraging conservation and clean technology alternatives.

Also included are competitive grants to fund energy efficiency improvement projects for small businesses, local government units, schools and non-profit organizations, rebates to homeowners and small businesses for qualifying solar projects, competitive grants to businesses that employ new technologies to produce heat and power on-site from a variety of fuel sources, support for the PA Energy Development Authority to expand the market for clean, advanced energy technologies, services and fuels, funding to facilitate the construction of new wind farms, and grants for projects on Pennsylvania farms to make them more self-reliant through energy efficiency upgrades, bio-digesters and distributed wind generation.

The previous administration’s priorities never included a comprehensive energy portfolio with support for clean energy alternatives coupled with a push for more energy conservation and funding for new technologies. Although the Governor’s budget is hardly a done deal, concerned citizens need to pressure their legislators to keep this portion of it intact so that the Commonwealth can make up for lost time.

Thank you to Colin McEvoy at LVEDC for this information on Governor Wolf’s budget.

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