Senator Fraser Files Renewable Energy Legislation
AUSTIN - Senator Troy Fraser (R- Horseshoe Bay) announced Wednesday morning at the State Capitol that he had filed legislation which will expand the Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). He was joined by Railroad Commission Chairman Victor Carrillo and other state officials.
"I am happy to have Chairman Carrillo here today," said Senator Fraser. "Senate Bill 533 is a direct result of the work he did with the Texas Energy Planning Council and I think it is important for people to know that he is working hard to find practical renewable energy resources for Texas."
The RPS requires the State of Texas to install a specific amount of generating capacity by 2025 from renewable energy technologies such as wind and solar energy. The RPS allows a combination of federal and state incentives for the development of renewable energy to private companies. Fraser's legislation would increase the cumulative installed renewable capacity in Texas by 5,000 MW by 2015. It calls for and upgrade of 10,000 MW by 2025 which would represent 10 percent of the state's energy needs.
The legislation would also direct the Public Utility Commission (PUC) to identify competitive renewable zones that would be used to update the transmission infrastructure and continue to direct the PUC to promote other renewable energy resources.
"Texas has incredible potential for renewable energy resources that I want to tap," said Fraser. "Wind will provide the overwhelming majority of renewable energy in Texas for the future, there is a lot of it and it is becoming more competitive in pricing."
The RPS program implemented in Texas is regarded as one of the most successful in the country. Since the inception of Senate Bill 7, which authorized RPS, 1187 MW of renewable energy capacity has been installed in Texas. This represents over half of the 2009 goal and Senate Bill 533 would increase that goal and time table to accommodate higher than expected expansion. Approximately 88 percent of that renewable energy is from wind generation.
"On behalf of the Texas Energy Planning Council, which I chaired, I would like to thank Senator Fraser for his support, it is important to have the Chairman of the Business and Commerce Committee committed to renewable energy," said Chairman Carrillo. "This legislation is important to Texas and its future energy needs."
The Texas Energy Planning Council was created by Governor Rick Perry in 2003 to develop a plan that will fuel Texas' future economic growth and prosperity. The council is made up of 22 members who represent a diversified interest in Texas energy sector. Senator Fraser's legislation represents recommendations found in the Texas Energy Plan of 2005.