There’s a lot of debate about whether increasing natural gas production will help or hurt renewables.
In Pennsylvania, where a major shale gas boom is underway, Governor Tom Corbett is doing exactly what renewable energy supporters feared, according to a recent story in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:
The Corbett administration is de-emphasizing renewable energy and energy conservation, eliminating programs created by previous Democratic and Republican administrations as it focuses on natural gas energy from booming Marcellus Shale.
Quietly but systematically, the administration has all but shut down the state Department of Environmental Protection’s Office of Energy and Technology Deployment — the state’s primary energy office — and removed directors and reassigned staff in the Office of Energy Management in the Department of General Services and the Governor’s Green Government Council.
It has also forbidden state executive agencies from signing contracts that support clean energy supply.
After many years of strong build-up of Pennsylvania’s renewable energy industry under former Democratic Governor Ed Rendell, is all that work being dismantled in the name of natural gas?
Rendell signed a renewable energy standard into law, created manufacturing incentives, and expanded rebates and loans for renewable energy projects – helping spur the creation of tens of thousands of jobs in the state. But some groups fear that is all being swept aside by the Corbett Administration: