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Gov. Edward G. Rendell, D-Pa., has announced a number of strategic initiatives the commonwealth will make to reduce energy use, stimulate the renewable energy sector and cut costs.

"We need to make immediate, sweeping adjustments to the way state government operates to counter escalating gas prices and rising energy prices," says Rendell. "The steps I am announcing today will reduce our environmental impact by using less energy, and helping to grow our renewable energy sector by purchasing more clean, renewable energy."

Rendell has directed the Department of General Services to increase the commonwealth's purchase of green power from the current 30% to 50% from solar, wind, geothermal, low-impact hydropower and biomass sources.

Rendell also urged prompt action by the General Assembly on the following bills:

- House Bill 2201, which is awaiting a vote in both chambers, will require utilities to provide service to customers at the lowest reasonable rate,

- Special Session H.B. 1, which was adopted by the House on March 11, will provide funding to develop solar, wind and other advanced energy industries,

- H.B. 2200, which was passed by the House on Feb. 12, will help consumers save on their energy bills by conserving electricity and using it more efficiently, and

- H.B. 1202, the governor's PennSecurity Fuels Initiative that has been awaiting action by the Senate since June, would require nearly 1 billion gallons of biofuels to be produced and consumed in the commonwealth.

SOURCE: Pennsylvania Office of the Governor

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