WASHINGTON— New research from The Pew Charitable Trusts, Clean Economy Rising, examines policies in eight states —Georgia, Maine, Michigan, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas—and finds that they attracted a total of $23.2 billion in private investment in clean energy over the past five years (2009 to 2013). Together they will generate an additional $83.6 billion over the next decade (2014 to 2023).
The collection of state-specific briefs reveals that each takes a unique approach to its clean energy economy. States have seized on federal policies, such as the production and investment tax credits, to attract private financing for renewable technologies, and have leveraged their universities and research institutions to foster innovation and public-private partnerships.
However, policy uncertainty created by the expiration of federal tax incentives dampens this investment. Choices made in the coming years at the federal and state levels will determine whether or not the clean energy economies in these states achieve their full potential.
“In many cases, states with rich traditional energy resources also have vibrant clean energy sectors—Texas and North Dakota, for example,” said Phyllis Cuttino, director of Pew’s clean energy initiative. “It is also clear from our review of a geographically diverse set of states that stable policy sets the stage for success.”
“Investors, businesses, and innovators must have certainty,” Cuttino added. “Just as states that establish long-term clean energy goals have prospered, such as North Carolina and Georgia, those states that have weakened policies or policy uncertainty, such as Ohio and Pennsylvania, are now at a crossroads.”
“State renewable energy policies are clearly critical in expanding jobs, businesses, and investments,” said Cuttino. “But the federal government has a role to play, too. The rapidly expanding global clean energy sector is estimated to reach $7 trillion in private investment by 2030. But American clean energy innovations, technologies, and products are at a competitive disadvantage in the worldwide marketplace when episodic federal policy—including on-again, off-again tax incentives such as the production tax credit—creates uncertainty for businesses and investors.”
The state policy briefs, along with a summary of state investments, are available at www.pewtrusts.org/cleanenergy.
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