green energy

ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

A House panel has recommended changes to a bill that would ultimately change the rates on everyone’s electric bills. The energy bill has the potential to bail out the state’s struggling nuclear plants while repealing Ohio’s green energy standards. 

Republican lawmakers are looking to draw out some of the big changes proposed in the energy bill.

The legislation originally proposed charging residential ratepayers $2.50 on their monthly electric bill to support subsidies, most of which would go to nuclear plants.

A photo of the Ohio House subcomittee on energy
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Opponents are speaking out against the bill that would prop up two struggling nuclear plants while also tossing out the state’s green energy requirements for utilities. 

The proposed law would create a monthly fee of $2.50 to create clean air credits for carbon-free power generators.

House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) said ratepayers will end up paying less because the bill gets rid of the alternative energy standards which can end up being more than $4 a month.

photo of Blue Creek wind farm turbine
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Ohio's state Senate plans to deliver the final blow to what are known as Ohio’s green energy standards. These standards require utilities to get a certain amount of energy from renewable sources. A bill to toss out those requirements could move first thing next year.

Republican Senate President Larry Obhof is resolute that he plans on moving a bill in January that would get rid of the green-energy requirements, though he admits he’d like to see a few changes first.

photo of Governor john Kasich at Amazon
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Gov. John Kasich got a guided tour of Amazon’s new fulfillment center in central Ohio today. And as Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler reports, he took the opportunity to criticize a bill to change the state’s green energy requirements on electric utilities into voluntary goals.

Before the tour, Amazon’s Paul Misener talked about the company’s goal of getting 100 percent of its energy for its Ohio cloud computing operation from renewable sources. And Kasich had a message for Sen. Jay Hottinger, a Newark Republican, in the audience.

wind turbines
WKSU

A bill to change the state’s green energy benchmarks on electric utilities from requirements to goals is halfway through the Statehouse. But as in spite of the overwhelming vote in the House, the bill faces an uncertain future.

photo of Kristen Kubitza
STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

An environmental group says Ohio is 11th among all states in jobs in the solar energy industry. But the group says a vote likely this week in the House to change the state’s energy requirements for electric utilities could change that.

The Solar Foundation’s job survey shows more than 5,800 solar jobs in Ohio now, with a 3% projected growth this year. But the Sierra Club says the proposal to change the state’s renewable energy benchmarks from requirements to goals could stall that.

photo of wind turbine
IBERDROLA RENEWABLES

House Republicans are sending a message to Gov. John Kasich by moving a bill that would effectively kill green-energy standards in Ohio. This is similar to a bill Kasich vetoed last year and he isn’t afraid to use that veto pen again.

Kasich signs water-testing bill
M.L. SCHULTZE / WKSU

Gov. John Kasich spoke to Ohio’s electoral college members, and then signed his name to a stack of bills passed by state lawmakers in the last two weeks.

Among the 17 bills Kasich signed is the so-called “Petland Bill," which overrides local laws restricting where pet stores can get the animals they sell. The bill also includes a provision banning local communities from raising the minimum wage.

photo of a wind turbine
IBERDROLA RENEWABLES

The House passed a bill that would stop the government from enforcing the increased use of green energy for three years.

Supporters say the bill still requires energy companies to increase the use of alternative resources. It just doesn’t mandate yearly increases.  

But opponents say this plan keeps kicking the can down the road on policies that they say helped progress the state’s green energy industry.

That includes Republican Representative Mike Duffey of Worthington.

photo of Ray Fakhoury testifying
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

The Ohio House is moving forward with a bill that once again changes the state’s green energy policy landscape – with a freeze on state green energy standards is set to expire at the end of the year.

The bill requires utilities to provide an increased amount of renewable energy by the year 2020, instead of smaller benchmarks each year for the next three years.

photo of Troy Balderson
STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

The fight over the future of Ohio’s energy policies for the next three years is just about over.

It’s likely state lawmakers will pass a bill that would essentially continue a freeze of the green energy standards that require utilities to meet benchmarks each year.

As Republican Sen.Troy Balderson of Zanesville points out, Ohio has already reached the renewable energy capacity the state initially set out to achieve, without a mandate in place.

photo of Keith Faber and John Kasich
Karen Kasler / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

One of the biggest fights waiting for lawmakers when they return to work after the Nov. 8 election will have to do with renewable energy in Ohio. The debate could come down to differing views between Gov. John Kasich and a leader in his own party.

Time is running out on a two-year freeze on the green energy standards that required utility companies in Ohio to use renewable energy and include energy efficiency.

photo of Blue Creek Wind Farm turbine
IBERDOLA RENWABLES

Though lawmakers are out of the Statehouse for the summer, many issues remain that might get a lot of attention when they get back. They include Ohio’s green energy policies. 

As of now, the laws that required electric utilities to provide a certain amount of renewable energy and achieve a certain amount of efficiency are on hold. But those policies are secheduled to go back into effect at the end of the year.

Several conservative lawmakers want to pass a bill that extends the freeze.

Photo of the Cleveland Clinic's Miller Family Pavillion
CLEVELAND CLINIC

Cleveland Clinic has established a $7.5 million green revolving fund, which focuses on renewable energy initiatives.

The announcement was made during this week’s annual Better Buildings Summit in Washington D.C.

The system works by pulling money from the fund initially and replenishes it later on with savings from reduced energy consumption.

Photo of Tony Minor
ANDY CHOW / OHIO PUBLIC RADIO

Advocates in the fight for stronger green energy policies are highlighting a unique voice in their corner-faith leaders.

Religious leaders came to the Statehouse to show support for alternative and green energy standards, which state lawmakers froze in 2014. A new Senate bill would continue that freeze.

photo of Blue Creek Wind Farm turbine
IBERDOLA RENWABLES

State lawmakers are coming up on a deadline on whether to change the law on green energy and renewable standards for utilities, or to leave it alone and let those standards go back into effect. 

A law passed in 2014 froze those renewable energy requirements for power companies for a two year period, expiring this year.  A bill from Republican Sen. Bill Seitz of Cincinnati would stop what he calls those “mandates” from taking effect another three years. 

photo of Blue Creek Wind Farm turbine
IBERDOLA RENWABLES

Clean energy is thriving in Ohio, according to a new jobs report. But advocates say the green energy industry can do more, with help from lawmakers. 

The report says more than 100,000 people work in the clean energy industry in Ohio.

Ian Adams with Clean Energy Trust, one of the groups that put out the report, says many are manufacturing jobs supporting the use of renewable energy in other states. And Adams adds that there would be even more jobs if Ohio brought back the green-energy standards it froze last year.