May 08, 2019

Kaine Introduces Bill To Establish Clean Energy Standard

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Tim Kaine joined Senator Tina Smith and others to introduce the Clean Energy Standard of Act of 2019, which would establish a federal Clean Energy Standard (CES), to put our nation on course to achieve net-zero emissions from the electric sector by midcentury to fight climate change.

“It’s past time for our country to get serious about addressing the causes of climate change,” said Kaine. "This bill puts us on course for a transformative expansion of renewable energy. Virginia is already on this path, having in recent years reduced our emissions while growing our economy. We need to send a clear signal that clean energy is the way to go because it will ensure long-term market stability, expand jobs in the renewable energy sector, and reduce the emissions responsible for climate change.”

The Clean Energy Standard Act of 2019 would:

  • Establish the federal Clean Energy Standard (CES) to put the U.S. on a path to net-zero electricity emissions. Under this plan, every company selling retail electricity would be asked to increase the amount of clean energy provided to its customers, with the recognition that different regions will be starting the clean energy transition at different benchmarks. This bill would establish a CES credit trading market, which would allow retail electricity sellers to cost-effectively achieve clean energy targets without taxes or other federal revenues;
  • Encourage companies to bring cost-effective, emission-free technologies to market. The bill would further incentivize development and deployment of zero-emission technologies, including long term storage, that can be turned on or off at any time and help balance the electric grid as the transition to clean energy continues; and
  • Significantly reduce emissions to benefit public health and the environment. Scientific modeling of this plan shows that it would reduce greenhouse gas emissions from electrical generators by nearly 80 percent by 2035 (compared to 2005 levels) and lead to thousands of fewer deaths every year.

In addition to Kaine and Smith, the bill is cosponsored by Senators Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Brian Schatz (D-HI).

You can access a summary of the bill here and text of the bill here.