Virginia Plan: Reduce Energy Use, Emissions, while Increasing Production
Virginia Governor Timothy Kaine released the first Virginia Energy Plan on September 12. The plan aims to reduce the growth of energy use by 40 percent, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent, and increase in-state energy production by 20 percent. The plan further calls for expanded consumer energy education, and supporting research and development in alternative transportation fuels, coastal energy production, and carbon capture and storage.
The State 2006 General Assembly required the Division of Energy of the Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy (DMME) to prepare the plan, which included information gathered by the Virginia Energy Plan Advisory Group. The group includes representatives from consumers, an environmental group, and Virginia energy producers. DMME manages the State Energy Program in Virginia.
The Virginia Energy Plan (PDF 5,983 KB) establishes broad goals for energy:
- Increase energy independence through expanded conservation and efficiency, and increased in-state energy production. The conservation and efficiency actions could reduce the growth rate of energy use by 40 percent, resulting in a leveling of per-capita energy use over time.
- Increase in-state energy production by 20 percent by expanding production of traditional, renewable, and biofuel resources.
- Increase consumer education so citizens can make smart decisions about how they use energy.
- Reduce 2025 baseline greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent. Part of this effort will include the creation of a Climate Change Commission, which would assess the level of Virginia's carbon emissions, what the consequences might be for Virginia if climate change is not addressed, and what other actions Virginia should take to meet this goal.
- Capitalize on economic development opportunities and increase research and development in four strategic areas — alternate transportation fuels, coastal energy production, carbon capture and storage, and nuclear technologies.
Kaine released the plan at Virginia Commonwealth University, where Stephen Walz, senior advisor for energy policy to the governor, presented the university with 1,800 compact fluorescent bulbs for installation on campus.
Kaine said, "We make many day-to-day decisions that affect whether we use energy wisely or whether we waste it. We also make long-term choices that affect energy use, such as choices about the houses we live in, the cars we drive, and whether we are using energy efficiently in our businesses. I look forward to reviewing these recommendations as we continue to work to develop a clear blueprint to address the energy challenges we face."
For more information, see the governor's September 12 press release.
To read more about renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in Virginia, see:
- Virginia news published on the EERE Web site.
- Brief project descriptions from the Virginia Energy Office published in the EERE State Energy Program newsletter, Conservation Update.
- Virginia publications listed in the EERE State Publications Database.