Published on November 10th, 2016 | by Joshua S Hill0
US Clean Technology Industry Defensively Congratulates President-Elect Donald Trump
November 10th, 2016 by Joshua S Hill
Following what can only be called a monumental Presidential upset win by now-President-Elect Donald Trump, the American clean technology industry has offered the new leader its support and congratulations, in the hope that he won’t out-and-out dismantle all the hard work of the past decade.
A lot has been said about what a Donald Trump Presidency means for the United States’ clean technology industry and the climate in general. Earlier this month a report from Lux Research concluded that a Donald Trump Presidency would mean 3.4 billion tonnes more carbon emissions than a Hillary Clinton Presidency. CleanTechnica Editor-in-Chief Zachary Shahan also dug deep into what can be expected for the clean technology industry as we move forward.
All in all, all evidence so far suggests that it will not be good — though we can hope that the angry and divisive rhetoric of the campaign will be reined-in by the realities of the US governmental system.
Joining the throngs of organizations and people congratulating President-Elect Trump are the country’s clean technology trade bodies — and there is a common thread through all their comments. While each are willing to work with Donald Trump, and hopeful for the future, each press release and statement sounds defensive — outlining the ‘unstoppable’ trend of clean energy development and the legitimacy of clean technologies such as wind and solar as both a viable energy alternative and source of strong economic and job growth.
In the end, we can’t be completely certain of what Donald Trump means for the clean technology industry. We have a lot of strong indicators that he is going to attempt to dismantle a number of policies that benefit the industry — on top of policies that are protecting the environment — and intends to reinvigorate the fossil fuel industries across the country. However, whether he is able to accomplish these goals when in Office and confronted with opposition from the Democratic Party in Congress and pressure within the White House … well, that is yet to be seen.
Hopefully a voice of reason will arise from somewhere. Does anyone have Ivanka’s phone number?
The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) — full statement here
“The American Wind Energy Association is ready to work with President-elect Donald Trump and his administration to assure that wind power continues to be a vibrant part of the US economy.
An unstoppable shift to a cleaner energy economy is underway, and the fundamentals of wind energy in America are strong. With bipartisan support for long-term policy firmly in place, and a near-record number of wind farms are under construction, our industry is saving consumers money by connecting low-cost wind power to more parts of the country.
We’re putting money in the pockets of farmers who host wind turbines, keeping the farm in the family and the family on the farm. And wind power supports 88,000 well-paying American jobs, a quarter of them made-in-the-USA manufacturing jobs. States, where most energy policy is made, are likely to continue their clean energy policies.
Mr. Trump has said, ‘We can pursue all forms of energy. This includes renewable energies and the technologies of the future.’ We look forward to working with him and his appointees to make sure they recognize that wind is working very well in America today as a mainstream energy source.
In his victory speech early this morning, the President-elect said, ‘We’re going to rebuild our infrastructure, which will become, by the way, second to none. And we will put millions of our people to work as we rebuild it.’ Wind power is some of the best infrastructure America has ever built and we are on track to doubling it from today’s levels by 2020.”
Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA)
“We congratulate President-elect Donald Trump for his victory in this historic election,” said Tom Kimbis, interim president of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). “The solar industry, born in America, is creating thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in investments across American communities. SEIA’s 1,000 member companies – the great majority of which are small businesses – will continue to innovate and provide clean, competitive, reliable, and affordable energy for all Americans.”
Advanced Energy Economy (AEE)
US-based business association Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) have sent a memo to the Transition Team for President-Elect Trump outlining ways in which to usher in a new era of secure, clean, and affordable energy.
“Our energy system is going through a transformational change in response to new technologies, new consumer preferences, and new challenges,” said Graham Richard, CEO of AEE. “Advanced energy can deliver greater reliability, savings in energy costs, and a cleaner energy system for the 21st century. The advanced energy industry can contribute to the many urgent needs facing our country, and we look forward to working with President Trump to deliver an advanced energy future for the nation.”
The full memo and the three key themes of the memo can be found here.
US Energy Association (USEA)
“The celebrated election of 2016 and the victory of President-elect Donald Trump is an historic moment for our country, and we expect significant policy changes across all sectors,” said Barry Worthington, US Energy Association Executive Director. “USEA looks forward to working with the new White House and administration officials as well as the newly elected and re-elected members of the U.S. House and Senate.”
“The country is at a pivotal moment, and the evolution of our energy policy is central to the changes we should expect in a new Trump administration. While energy wasn’t a central issue to the 2016 campaigns, President-elect Trump has promised to make sweeping changes to our energy policy.
“Most notably, President-elect Trump has promised to dissolve the contentious Clean Power Plan and walk away from global climate agreements, such as the Paris Accord. Absent the CPP, a number of coal plants may not have to go into retirement, and certainly natural gas will continue to provide more than 30 percent of our electricity generation. However, renewable energy development—wind and solar projects in the pipeline—will likely reach fruition. And, state authority over renewable portfolio standards will help drive some of that renewable energy expansion and technology growth. President-elect Trump will not likely push for federal incentives or subsidies for renewable energy.”
“Nine out of ten Americans support solar energy regardless of their party affiliation,” said Amit Ronen, director of the George Washington Solar Institute.
“The economics of solar remain strong and will only improve each year. So the US could very well reach Clinton’s ambitious goal of installing half a billion solar panels by 2020 even without her in the oval office.
“Although President-elect Trump recently claimed erroneously that solar panels only last 10 years and have a 28 year payback period, hopefully the awesome responsibility of being President of the United States will force him to rely on more fact based decision-making.
“Even though Trump recently denied his well-documented denial of climate change, key questions on the future of the Clean Power Plan, the Paris Agreement, and subsidies for fossil fuels will create a period of uncertainty that could slow the growth of disruptive technologies like solar.”
“The outcome of the US election clearly implies potential shifts in climate policy of the new US administration,” said Achim Steiner, director of Oxford Martin School and former executive director of the UN environment programme. “While this creates uncertainty in a domestic and international context, a pragmatic assessment is called for. Notwithstanding short-term changes in US posture and policy, the global economy has already begun to shift its focus towards a low carbon future.
“Markets and economics are likely to moderate any future US policy shift as US companies and investors assess what will keep America’s economy competitive and in business in a global market – given that some of its largest trading partners and competitors are already heavily investing in low carbon technologies and infrastructure. Add to that the rapidly growing number of US companies already employing millions of people in low carbon sectors and you can expect a strong domestic voice influencing future policy signals of the incoming administration in Washington.”
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