Environment

100% renewable energy by 2030: Senate President meets with Climate Action RI ahead of vote

“This is only the beginning,” continued the Senate President. “We’re going to be moving forward the next couple of years. [Climate] is one of the Senate priorities and it’s certainly a priority for the people in this state.”
Photo for 100% renewable energy by 2030: Senate President meets with Climate Action RI ahead of vote

Published on June 2, 2021
By Steve Ahlquist

Senate President Dominick Ruggerio (Democrat, District 4, Providence) met with members of Climate Action Rhode Island (CARI) on Tuesday ahead of a vote on his bill, S0629, which mandates that requires retail electricity sales to be supplied from 100% renewable resources by 2030. CARI was holding a rally outside Sapinsley Hall on the Rhode Island College campus, where the Senate has been meeting during Covid, in support of the bill.

“I want to thank you, not just for coming out here today but for what you do each and every day as far as your actions concerning the environment and the climate,” said Senate President Ruggerio to the two dozen CARI members at the rally. “We know [climate change] is coming down the pike quickly, and we’re looking to enact the appropriate legislation that will address that.

“This is only the beginning,” continued the Senate President. “We’re going to be moving forward the next couple of years. [Climate] is one of the Senate priorities and it’s certainly a priority for the people in this state.”

Asked about what can be done to get the bill through the House of Representatives, Senate President Ruggerio expressed optimism that the bill would pass, saying, “I think the House is pretty receptive to it right now.”

The legislation mandates a gradual increase in renewable energies, from the current three percent to seven percent retail electricity sales in 2022. After that, “an additional five percent of retail electricity sales in 2023, an additional six percent of retail electricity sales in 2024, an additional 11% of retail electricity sales in 2025, 2026, and 2027; and an additional 11.5% of retail electricity sales in 2028, 2029, and 2030 to achieve the goal that 100% of Rhode Island’s electricity demand is from renewable energy by 2030.”

Before the meeting with the Senate President, Kai Salem, the policy coordinator at Green Energy Consumers Alliance talked about the importance of passing this legislation, which is stronger than the federal goal of 100% renewable energy by 2035.

Also speaking to the rally was Mal Skowron, also with the Green Energy Consumers Alliance:

During the Senate hearing the bill passed with only one Democrat, Senator Leonidas Raptakis (Democrat, District 33, East Greenwich) joining Senate Republicans to oppose the legislation.

Justin Boyan

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