Climate Change & Renewable Energy

Climate Change & Renewable Energy

“Every night on the TV news is like a nature hike through the Book of Revelation, and, though the scientists have long connected the dots, the carbon polluters have mounted this lavishly funded, rear-guard action to pretend there’s still a debate.”  – Vice President Al Gore

My Commitment:

  • Not to just talk about climate change, but make fighting it a top priority.
  • Extend and expand programs like the ones I used as a city councilor to help cities lead the way on our climate fight.
  • Reinvest in clean energy job credits to help students access trade jobs in clean energy (electricians, installers, machinists, engineers)
  • Fight to restore vehicle emissions standards Trump targeted for repeal
  • Partner with state legislators to update our PACE laws so homeowners can include the cost of solar in their annual home mortgage payments and transfer them to a new owner without losing out.

Climate change is the biggest challenge my generation inherited and it will be up to up to stop it. Nearly every scientist agrees (except the ones paid by the fossil fuel industry) that human activity is accelerating climate change at an almost unstoppable rate.

President Trump ceded American leadership when he announced a withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accords.  But we don’t have to follow that path.

City Councilor Pat Davis announcing $51 million in new renewable energy credits for city projects, joined by Environment New Mexico, US Sen. Martin Heinrich, Councilor I. Benton, CNM solar job program instructors (2017)

With 350+ days of sunshine each year, New Mexico should be a national leader in renewable energy projects and innovation.

In the past 15 years, New Mexico has added enough wind and solar projects to equal the output of an entirely new nuclear power plant. That’s a future New Mexico can bank on!

As PNM draws down the San Juan generating station, we have a new opportunity to connect our renewable energy resources to that transmission system so we can export all of that energy, returning the funds here and putting local coal and oil workers to work in clean energy jobs.

Since New Mexico’s first utility-scale wind power plant was installed in 2003 near the small northeastern town of House, the state’s installations have grown to 1,080 megawatts of wind power, according to the American Wind Energy Association. The state also has 365 MW of solar power online, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association, adding 8 MW of residential power, 5 MW of commercial and 28 MW of utility-scale solar power just in 2015.

The state has the renewable resources to potentially provide 1,000 times more clean energy than Public Service Company of New Mexico’s current demand, according to the state Energy Conservation and Management Division. –Santa Fe Reporter, March 2016

Pat Davis leading ABQ’s new $51,000,000 solar project

“When Donald Trump was planning to take us backwards, I decided not to wait for Washington to help.  I set out to make Albuquerque more renewable.  Today, we’re investing in New Mexico’s largest municipal solar project ever and employing local workers to do it.  That’s a record I’m proud of.” – Pat Davis

As a city councilor, I worked with Environment New Mexico and Councilor Ike Benton to pass our city’s first renewable energy standard (25% by 2025) then led a team to design the state’s largest municipal solar energy program to fight climate change: $51 million in solar retrofitting to power city fire stations, libraries and the Convention Center (look for the panels this fall!).

Local groups including 350.org, the Union of Concerned Scientists, The Sierra Club, and more joined our effort and turned out members week after week in a show of local support for fighting climate change on a local level.

That plan was about three things:

  • Reinvesting local taxpayer dollars into local solar companies and workers so our children don’t have to leave Albuquerque to find work.
  • Making Albuquerque a clean energy leader nationwide
  • Fighting climate change at the local level – even as President Trump walks away from progress

But the federal bond credits and innovative financing we put together are in jeopardy unless they are renewed by Congress. I’ll fight to restore them so more cities can follow Albuquerque’s lead.

Read More

Albuquerque’s Solar Power Grab – POLITICO

Councilor Davis, Benton & Sen. Heinrich Announces $25M Solar Project to Increase Solar and Grow Local Jobs

OFA-NM keeps up the climate pressure!