The Feb. 25 Columbian editorial, “Greens versus the poor,” calling the state’s clean-energy initiative “a green-energy-promotion,” fails to capture the multiple benefits of renewable energy. In approving Initiative 937 in 2006, voters put Washington on a path to a more stable and affordable energy future. By stimulating new investment in renewable energy, I-937 has helped diversify our energy mix, making us less dependent on volatile energy markets. That helps keep power rates stable, which is good for every family in the state. The renewable industry has invested $8 billion in Washington.
As a lifelong Washingtonian, a parent, sole breadwinner, and neighbor to many hard working families, I’m grateful for the standards put in place by I-937, which have provided good-paying jobs during a difficult economic time. As an employee of a renewable energy company currently investing in Washington, I appreciate the safety net created under the initiative that limits the amount spent on renewables to as little as 1 percent for utilities whose power “load” isn’t growing in a given year.
Voters made the right choice in approving I-937. I hope my representatives in Olympia, Sen. Don Benton, R-Vancouver, and Reps. Monica Stonier, D-Vancouver, and Paul Harris, R-Vancouver, respect that choice and vote against bills to dismantle it.