Governor Dannel P. Malloy today unveiled a draft comprehensive energy strategy for Connecticut that will create jobs, give residents and businesses more choice about the fuels they use for heat and power, lower energy costs and better protect the environment and natural resources.
Key components of the plan include: making a lower-cost natural gas option available to more than 250,000 residents and 75% of businesses in the next seven years; and expanding efficiency programs to help residents and businesses reduce energy use. In addition, the plan will also reexamine the state's Renewable Portfolio Standards -- which currently calls for 20% renewable power by 2020 -- with an eye toward both raising the standard and increasing the mix of renewable options. Combined, the strategy is expected to generate at least 10,000 jobs.
In a speech this morning before the "What's the Deal? Business Energy Conference" in Cromwell where the strategy was unveiled, Governor Malloy said, "Our environmental, energy, and economic challenges are all related -- and tackling them together offers the best chance to lower the cost of electricity and heat for our families and seniors, the best chance to lower the cost of power and make our businesses and industries more competitive so [they] can create the jobs that our residents need, and the best chance to reduce air emissions and other harmful impacts on our land and water."
Daniel C. Esty, Commissioner of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), said, "We will achieve dramatic environmental and public health gains through greater reliance on a cleaner fuel such as natural gas and reduced energy demands through efficiency measures. These steps will significantly reduce the level of pollution put into our air and help us all breathe easier."
Connecticut's Energy Strategy, the first real blueprint for planning and shaping the state's energy future, was developed by DEEP to meet the requirements of landmark energy legislation, Public Act 11-80, which was signed into law by Governor Malloy on July 1, 2011.
This plan analyzes total energy needs -- electricity, heating, power for manufacturing, and fuels for transportation -- for residents and businesses going out to the year 2050. The strategy unveiled by the Governor is a draft that is now being offered for public comment.
The full plan and the schedule for public meetings are available online at ct.gov/energystrategy.
The text of Governor Malloy's speech at this morning's CBIA Business Energy Conference is available on the Office of the Governor's website.