Beyond Cliffside: Making North Carolina a National Green Energy Leader
Today I released an ambitious and comprehensive energy plan. The controversy over the Cliffside coal-fired power plant in Rutherford County must be the end of an era in North Carolina.
We should not license another coal-fired power plant to operate in our state again.
There may come a day when carbon capture and sequestration technology makes greenhouse gases from coal-fired plants a thing of the past. That day is not today. And until such a day arrives, we should table any discussion about licensing more coal-fired plants here.
But that is not enough. The Cliffside controversy should serve a larger purpose for those of us concerned about our environment, our economy and our energy future. As Governor, I intend to use the Cliffside experience as a fulcrum on which to move North Carolina energy policy in a new direction.
Our state will grow significantly over the next 12 years, adding almost as many people as live in the state of South Carolina. People come to North Carolina for jobs and for our quality of life – for the beauty of the Blue Ridge and the sweeping expanse of our pristine coastline. Businesses come here because our workforce is strong and the cost of doing business is affordable. But a shortsighted energy policy that fails to take major strides forward would put all that we hold dearest in jeopardy.
Under my plan, North Carolina would embrace the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change goals, and be a national leader in a movement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in this country by 80% by the year 2050. To see how we will meet these goals please read the details of my plan here.In North Carolina we face serious energy consumption issues as well as the threat of global climate change. The time for action is now.