CARSON CITY, Nev. - (KOLO) Assemblyman Chris Brooks introduced his first bill at the Nevada State Legislature Wednesday. Assembly Bill 206 would revise the renewable energy portfolio standard for the state of Nevada.
"We have a portfolio standard that gives the state guidance on how much energy it uses, receives and sells in the state that is renewable energy," Brooks said.
Right now that number is 25% t by 2025. This legislation would take that to 50% by 2030 and 80% by 2040.
"It phases in because so many large users, NV Energy and some of the smaller utilities, they need to have the ability to ramp into it," Brooks said. "NV Energy is already exceeding that requirement under the portfolio standard now and it will just incrementally increase from here."
The hope is to take advantage of more of Nevada's natural resources.
"We have the most geothermal per capita of any state in the country and the most solar capacity of any state in the country," Brooks said. "So we get a tremendous amount of sun and geothermal power and some wind - we have one utility-scale wind project - but we have an abundance of resources here."
Nevada was one of the first states to have a portfolio standard.
"At the time that was a bold step, to get to 25% by 2025," Brooks said.
It's something that's created jobs in a variety of sectors.
"We've created thousands of jobs meeting that portfolio standard," Brooks said. "The cost of renewable energy has come down considerably, all while the cost of our retail electricity here in the state has come down as well. So we think it's so successful what we've done so far that we're just going to double down on that. I've seen the benefits of what a portfolio standard can do for the state."
He says recent polls show nearly 75% of Nevadans want to make pursing renewable energy a priority.