TexasIsHot – Energy Efficiency

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Nov 29 2016

Texas is among states turning to the future with renewable energy jobs.

by david in Blog with 0 Comments
 http://bit.ly/2gfkcOf
Stephen Hanley
11/28/2016

Clean Energy Jobs Increasing While Fossil Fuel Jobs Are Decreasing IRENA Says.

IRENA, the International Renewable Energy Agency, says the trend is clear. Jobs in clean energy industries like solar, wind, geothermal and hydroelectric are increasing while jobs in oil, natural gas, and coal extraction are decreasing worldwide. About 8.1 million people worldwide had jobs in the clean energy in 2015. That’s up from 7.7 million in 2014, according to the latest figures from IRENA.

The clean energy advocacy group, which is based in Abu Dhabi, says jobs in the solar industry in the US were greater than those in oil and gas extraction for the first time in 2015. Job creation in the solar sector grew 12 times faster than overall job creation.  By contrast, oil and gas producers slashed 351,410 jobs worldwide since prices began to slide in the middle of 2014, according to Houston-based Graves & Co.

“The continued job growth in the renewable energy sector is significant because it stands in contrast to trends across the energy sector,” said Adnan Amin, director-general of IRENA. “This increase is being driven by declining renewable energy technology costs and enabling policy frameworks. We expect this to continue as the case for renewables strengthens and countries move to achieve climate targets.” IRENA predicts there will be 24 million jobs in clean energy by 2030, driven in large measure by efforts to meet carbon reduction targets agreed to by all nations at the COP 21 summit in Paris last December.

In a trend little noticed by the mainstream press, renewable energy is starting to gain a foothold in rural America, the very place where Donald Trump support is strongest. People may disagree about climate change and what to do about it, but simple economics are driving a switch over to renewable energy in so-called red states like Texas, Oklahoma, and South Carolina.

Polls show that voters across all political fault lines strongly favor renewable energy. One such poll done by Hart Research on behalf of NextGen Climate Action shows that 70% of swing state voters support the goal of 50% clean energy by 2030, including 54% of Republicans. James and Deborah Fallows have been crisscrossing the country on behalf of the American Futures project. They say their task is “taking seriously places that don’t usually get registered seriously.”

What they are finding in their travels is that renewable energy projects in rural America are giving small town residents pride in their contribution toward green jobs and greener energy. People who make that pride part of their identity become more open to further action. Someday they may even come to see themselves as part of a larger struggle against climate change.

 Vox writer David Roberts says, “I am pessimistic about a great many things but this trend is a source of optimism. Clean energy is going to seep into rural areas, where the Donald Trump voters live. It’s going to present an opportunity for economic development in places that badly need it. And as it spreads, it will gain cross-partisan legitimacy and economic clout, exerting bottom-up pressure on policymakers.

“And that’s good, because there’s a lot policymakers can do, especially when it comes to encouraging distributed energy like rooftop solar panels, home batteries, and electric cars.

“There’s a kind of grassroots populism to be built around distributed energy, a populism of pride, self-reliance, and rebuilding to offset the xenophobic populism that is currently ascendant. I’ll have more to say about that in a future post. For now, let’s just savor a little optimism where we can find it.”

Source: Bloomberg  Graphic credit: IRENA

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  • "In order to meet our goals, we need programs like the TexasIsHot campaign to help change the way people think about energy." - State Sen. Troy Fraser (R-Horseshoe Bay), Chairman of Senate Natural Resources Committee
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  • "If every Texas household adopted just a few of the dozens of energy efficiency strategies referenced on TexasIsHot.org, our air would be cleaner, our limited supply of natural resources would be better protected, and our wallets would be heavier..." Kip Averitt (R-Waco), Former State Senator and Chairman of Senate Committee on Natural Resources
  • ”The TexasIsHot campaign targets an important piece of the clean energy effort -- educating Texans on the way we use electricity and quantifying the financial and environmental costs associated with our use. By just reducing the amount of electricity we use and waste, TexasIsHot.org can show people how to save money..." State Sen. Kirk Watson (D-Austin)
  • "Fluctuating energy costs are really hurting Texas families and businesses, but by just making a few easy changes, Texans can cut down on energy waste. TexasIsHot.org is a tremendous resource which arms consumers with the information they need to save themselves money by becoming more energy efficient, and help our environment." State Sen. Rodney Ellis (D-Houston)
  • "Texas is the third fastest growing state in the nation with a net growth of 1,000 people each and every day. This brings many challenges including providing clean and affordable electricity. That is why I'm excited about TexasIsHot.org. This website is an instructional resource that will help Texans save on their energy bills at home and in the workplace..." State Rep. Phil King (R-Weatherford)
  • "Now, more than ever, Texans need to work together to conserve energy and to make more efficient use of the energy we consume. The TexasIsHot.org website is an extraordinary resource for people who want to save money and help conserve our precious natural resources..." State Rep. Rafael Anchía (D-Dallas)
  • "By partnering with the TexasIsHot Coalition we can extend our effort’s reach, leverage our resources, and ensure that Austin’s energy grid continues to be a test-bed for technologies, products, and services that will transform our state’s energy system." Brewster McCracken, Executive Director, Pecan Street Project
  • "The City of Houston is working harder than ever to make Houston green and energy efficient, but we need the help of every citizen. I would encourage everyone to take a moment to explore the TexasIsHot website to learn what we can all do to make Houston, and the rest of Texas, the green and energy efficient example for the rest of the nation." Mayor Annise Parker, Houston
  • "Energy efficiency is one of our top priorities. Partnering with the TexasIsHot Coalition will help us educate citizens and local businesses about energy-efficient practices in order to meet our goal of reducing residential and commercial electric use." Gavin Dillingham, Chief of Sustainable Growth – General Services Department, for the City of Houston
  • "We are excited about the new partnership that the City of Corpus Christi has entered into with the TexasIsHot Coalition. TexasIsHot.org provides a platform to educate policy makers, city employees and citizens on how to save money and help the environment by conserving energy..." Mayor Joe Adame, Corpus Christi
  • "I am excited that the City of Corpus Christi has joined the TexasIsHot Coalition and look forward to working with them to help Texans become smarter energy users. Energy efficiency is by far the best way for people to reduce their bills and help the environment, but we need education and outreach to make this happen." State Rep. Solomon Ortiz, Jr (D-Corpus Christi)
  • "Because of its fast growth and hot summers, Texas has to get smarter about energy conservation. I applaud the efforts of Corpus Christi and TexasIsHot to help businesses and residents reap the benefits of increased efficiency." Senator Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa (D-McAllen)
  • "Energy efficiency is the cleanest, quickest and cheapest way to get smart about energy use, saving both money and the environment. I applaud the TexasIsHot Coalition in their effort to educate Texans about the benefits of energy efficiency..." Luke Metzger, Director, Environment Texas
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