Gov. Rick Perry today highlighted Texas' efforts to diversify its energy portfolio and clean the air, while creating jobs and growing the state's economy over the past decade. The governor spoke at the 6th Annual Clean Carbon Policy Summit and Project Expo, which provides academic and industry professionals with an in-depth look at policy and technology issues involved with meeting Texas' electricity needs.
"We stand at a place where technology and innovation could propel us into a world of cleaner, more efficient energy generated from all sources, and where the United States could be much less dependent on foreign countries for energy," Gov. Perry said. "In Texas, we've built a deep and varied energy portfolio by continuing to support the development of traditional energy sources, while cleaning our air and making tomorrow's technologies more viable."
The air Texans breathe today is significantly cleaner than it was in 2000. As Texas led much of the nation in job, population and economic growth, the Texas clean air program achieved a 22 percent reduction in ozone and a 53 percent decrease in NOx emissions.
Texas' energy industry continues to fuel the nation, supplying 20 percent of the nation's oil production, one-fourth of the nation's natural gas production, a quarter of the nation's refining capacity, and nearly 60 percent of the nation's chemical manufacturing. Texas' energy industry employs 200,000 to 300,000 Texans, with $35 billion in total wages.
Gov. Perry continues to support making alternative energy technologies less expensive, thereby encouraging widespread commercial use and removing barriers to innovation and competition. Modernizing the national energy grid to support wind and solar energy transmission, facilitating investments in the development of carbon capture and sequestration technologies, and removing barriers to investment in nuclear generation would reduce carbon emissions while encouraging competitiveness, innovation and growth in alternative energy sources.
Additionally, Texas has already installed more wind power than any other state and all but four countries, and is developing new transmission lines that will move more than 18,000 megawatts across the state. Texas has attracted more than 9,000 megawatts of energy from the development of next generation nuclear power plants. The state is also looking to add new clean coal plants, which will capture and sequester carbon dioxide emissions or use carbon dioxide to increase production from Texas oil fields.
Hosted by the Clean Coal Technology Foundation of Texas, the Clean Carbon Policy Summit and Project Expo includes recaps of state and federal incentive programs for clean carbon, profiles of projects in development, and discussions of energy issues before Congress and the 82nd Texas Legislature. The Clean Coal Technology Foundation works to maintain reliable, affordable and environmentally responsible coal-fueled electric generation in the diverse portfolio of energy sources for Texas. The foundation supports the work of the Governor's Clean Coal Technology Council of Texas, which promotes the use and development of new technologies that will encourage continued improvements in air emissions from Texas power producers.