A state-wide public interest group in Pennsylvania is urging a government task force on energy to improve the state’s draft energy policy and to support the use of renewable energy in future.HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania, US, 2001-09-06 [SolarAccess.com] A state-wide public interest group in Pennsylvania is urging a government task force on energy to improve the state’s draft energy policy and to support the use of renewable energy in future. “In the daily battle for brains and investment that Pennsylvania must win, polluted communities are at a competitive and economic disadvantage,” says John Hanger, president and CEO of Citizens for Pennsylvania’s Future (PennFuture). “The Governor’s Energy Task Force can go a long way to burying Pennsylvania’s old problems by adopting these and other recommendations to provide a clean, green and modern energy future for all our citizens.” Specific proposals from PennFuture include a specific goal of 10 percent of state electricity to come from renewable resources by 2010. In addition to governmental incentives and policies, the state government should commit to purchase green power for its own consumption as well as to provide grants to support renewable energy. It should also require all electricity suppliers in the state to provide 10 percent of their total supply in green power by 2010, and use the state’s power as a consumer to require that all state buildings buy at least 20 percent of their electricity from renewable sources. To maintain its leadership role in developing new wind energy, PennFuture says the state should provide tax credits, infrastructure improvements and sales tax exemptions for wind energy facilities in order to reach a goal of developing 1,000 MW of wind generation by 2010. It wants the state to use all savings from the removal of stranded costs from consumers bills (beginning next year in the service territory of Duquesne Light) for the purchase of green energy, and the state should urge other municipalities to do the same. These actions will help grow the renewable energy market with no additional costs to the taxpayer, says the group. PennFuture wants the state to promote the use of modern tools and programs to assist citizens to use energy more efficiently. Utilities should be required to provide conservation programs and tax incentives for green buildings should be adopted. With the electricity marketplace moving toward distributed generation, Pennsylvania should lead the way by requiring electricity distribution companies to provide easy hook-up for personal power and to allow such customers to sell their excess power back to the company, says PennFuture.