Harrisburg (March 22)State Senator Lisa Boscola issued the following statement regarding Governor Wolf’s announcement of the Commonwealth’s commitment to solar energy:

The Governor’s announcement today to construct several solar panel arrays throughout the Commonwealth to offset the energy used by half of the state’s many offices, buildings and facilities with a renewable source is a positive step.  The Governor should be commended for leading by example to grow renewable energy resources and reduce the Commonwealth’s greenhouse gas emissions at the same time. 

In Harrisburg alone, many of the buildings within the Capitol Complex are historic and beautiful, but also old and inefficient.  This program is a great way to offset those inefficiencies with clean renewable energy.  Additionally, I believe that there will be room to expand this program in the future as new buildings and facilities are constructed and more renewable energy assets become available. 

As the Democratic Chair of the Senate Consumer Protection & Professional Licensure Committee, I understand that renewables alone cannot fully generate enough reliable energy to carry the base load of energy needed to power Pennsylvania’s grid.  Diversity of our state’s electricity generation portfolio is a strength and is critical to maintain. However, the state as property owner should do all that it can to increase the use of renewables where both appropriate and responsible to taxpayers.

I believe the state can be aggressive in other areas using its purchasing power to cut carbon emissions in Pennsylvania, specifically EV, or electronic vehicles.  Senate Bill 435 is slated to run out of our committee.  This bill establishes a clean energy transportation infrastructure, administered by the state’s electric distribution utility companies.  Once the infrastructure is available to support more EV use, the state should purchase more EV’s and in the meantime construct and expand more charging stations at our facilities to encourage their use.