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Sens. Mark Udall, D-Colo., and Tom Udall, D-N.M., have introduced legislation to establish a federal renewable portfolio standard (RPS) that would require electric utilities to produce 25% of their electricity from wind, solar and other renewable energy sources by 2025.

The bill would initiate a federal minimum standard mandating retail energy suppliers to diversify their portfolios with the first requirement of 6% for 2012, and consistently increase thereafter until meeting the 2025 goal.

The bill is based on legislation introduced in the House of Representatives in 2002 by a bipartisan team led by the Udalls and Rep. Todd Platts, R-Pa. Their work helped build a coalition in the House that won passage of an RPS amendment in 2007. That amendment stalled in the Senate later in 2007.

Studies have shown that a national RPS requiring electric utilities to diversify their portfolios with wind, solar, biomass, hydrokinetic and other renewable energy sources would create jobs, reduce energy bills and strengthen energy security.

Municipal and other publicly owned power plants and rural electric co-ops would be exempt from the requirements.

SOURCE: Office of Sen. Mark Udall


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