Maryland General Assembly votes to restore Clean Energy Jobs Act

Published on February 08, 2017 by Daily Energy Insider Reports

The Maryland General Assembly voted recently to override Gov. Hogan’s veto and reinstate the Clean Energy Jobs Act.

In April 2016, the Maryland General Assembly advanced the Clean Energy Jobs Act. Hogan vetoed the legislation in May.

The bill will increase Maryland’s renewable energy standard by five percent, leading to a quarter of the state’s energy coming from renewables by 2020.

“Making the Clean Energy Jobs Act law is the right decision for Maryland,” Tom Kiernan, American Wind Energy Association CEO, said. “Renewable energy legislation is pro-growth, pro-business, and means access to more jobs in Maryland. From the Free State’s population-hubs to majestic shores, this ensures more low-cost, homegrown American wind power reaches homeowners and businesses.”

Critics of the bill, including the governor, cited an increased electricity cost for consumers.

“It will be an additional charge on your energy bill each month to pay for overly expensive solar and wind energy credits, the majority of which are created by companies outside of Maryland,” Hogan said.

The bill’s supporters argued that the benefits of job creation, industry growth and increased environmental health outweigh the cost to consumers.

“There’s an economic argument, we’ve got an environmental argument, and then there are some health benefits as well,” Sen. Brian Feldman (D-MD) said. “All three of these put together far, far exceed whatever possible small incremental residential rate impacts we have.”