The production and use of conventional, fossil fuel-based energy has numerous drawbacks. For example, fossil fuels cause 95 percent of air pollution. Also, they are diminishing resources, and their scarcity may eventually make extraction too expensive or environmentally damaging. By contrast, renewable energy—from hydroelectric, wood, waste, geothermal, wind, and solar sources—produces power and heat with little or no pollution. Renewable energy is also immune to certain factors that influence fossil fuel costs, such as supply fluctuations or geopolitical developments. If renewable energy is to make a greater contribution to our overall energy supply, however, additional research and development are needed.
Renewable Energy: Policy
Supporting renewable energy
- support research and development of new, cost-effective renewable energy sources and technologies;
- support cost-effective efforts to increase the percentage of electricity produced from renewable sources;
- ensure adequate and fair access to transmission facilities for distributing renewable sources of energy at reasonable cost to ratepayers;
- establish or improve government procurement policies to maximize the use of cost-effective renewable energy technologies; and
- establish or improve standards for the incorporation of renewable energy technologies in all new public-sector buildings and major renovations.