Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) signed an executive order on Jan. 17 committing the state to be first in the U.S. powered by 100% renewable energy by the end of the decade.
The order directs the state’s Office of Energy Resources to conduct an economic and energy market analysis and develop policies and programs to reach “this bold but achievable goal,” says a statement from Gov. Raimondo’s office.
“We’re already leading the fight against climate change, but we have to take increasingly aggressive action if we want to avoid catastrophe,” Gov. Raimondo said.
In coming months, the state energy office will work to develop policy and programmatic solutions to achieve the governor’s goal and advance the state’s economic, energy and environmental interests with a final report due by Dec. 31.
Acting State Energy Commissioner Nicholas Ucci says the state has benefited from clean energy policies and programs that are attracting investment and jobs, putting the state “on track to meet more than one-third of our electricity demand with renewables" within a few years.
Rhode Island's 100% by 2030 renewable electricity goal is part of a broader state strategy launched three years ago to address the climate change crisis by reducing economy-wide carbon emission and accelerating clean energy supply.
In related news, Danish offshore wind developer Ørsted announced Jan. 15 that will open this spring a U.S. Innovation Hub in Providence that is set to leverage company expertise across its offices in the U.S. and Europe.
“The Innovation Hub team will be Ørsted’s first point of contact for any U.S. technology companies interested in contracting with Ørsted Offshore..the company said, adding that the hub will host bi-monthly "open door days" for established firms and start-ups to present technologies and test results..