Growing the economy and protecting the environment are not conflicting goals. By forging strong partnerships between the public sector and private business, our state's making great strides toward accomplishing both of these vital objectives.
In fact, the plans that President Obama outlined this week to address climate change are closely aligned with Delaware's strategy. The President's calls for lowering dirty emissions from existing power plants and building new cutting-edge facilities reflect the approach our state took to reduce emissions more than any other state over the past few years.
Our blueprint is simple: clean up old plants, build new ones that use natural gas and renewables, and invest in energy efficiency. These efforts are exemplified here in Dover, where we broke ground this week on Calpine's new Garrison Energy Center.
This will be a natural gas power-generating facility, reflecting Calpine's commitment to ending its use of coal in Delaware. With a little support from a state grant, this power plant will produce cost-effective energy that reduces Delawareans' utility bills while improving air quality and supporting hundreds of construction jobs.
By building cleaner facilities in Delaware, we reduce our need to use the dirty out-of-state plants that create more than 90 percent of our air pollution.
Simultaneously, we recognize that the cheapest energy remains the energy we don't use. We must encourage utilities to prioritize efficiency when it's cheaper than buying electricity from the grid.
By sustaining our state's commitment to clean energy and supporting the President's national initiatives to reduce the damaging impact of climate change, we'll strengthen the economy and ensure we pass a healthy planet to future generations. And that will keep Delaware moving forward.