In a huge win for clean energy advocates, MGM Resorts International, the state’s largest employer, today announced support for legislation to increase the amount of electricity Nevada gets from renewables to 50 percent.By supporting Assembly Bill 206, MGM is not only betting on the state’s clean energy economy, the company is also signaling that committing to renewables is good business.
MGM owns the casino-resorts MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, New York-New York, Circus Circus, Excaliber, Luxor, The Mirage and other properties in Las Vegas and Nevada. Last year, MGM exited NV Energy, the state’s electric utility, to buy more clean energy on the open market.
MGM’s support of a stronger renewable energy standard stands in contrast to opposition from some other casino-resort companies. Earlier this year, the Nevada Resort Association, which represents MGM and other Las Vegas casino-resorts, announced that it opposed AB 206, the bill sponsored by Las Vegas Assemblyman Chris Brooks that would increase the renewable standard in Nevada from 20 percent, where it is today, to 50 percent by 2030.
The legislation has received significant support from both sides of the political aisle, and from a diverse group of Nevada businesses, including Barrick USA, a giant among Nevada-based gold mining companies, personal-products producer Unilever, and Dignity Health, one of Nevada’s largest health care providers.
Advocates for Nevada’s growing clean energy economy, which includes more than 20,000 workers in energy efficiency and solar power, applauded MGM’s leadership.
“Once again MGM is showing why they are a leader in the development and support of clean energy and our economy here in Nevada. It is very exciting and positive that they recognize the importance of a strong, dynamic renewable standard for our state,” said Andy Maggi, executive director of the Nevada Conservation League. “MGM joins other big employers in the state in its support for AB 206, which will strengthen Nevada’s position as a job-building, economic leader in clean energy.”
“Twenty years ago, Nevada adopted one of the first renewable energy standards of any state in the country, and businesses know that is has strengthened and diversified our economy,” said Jennifer Taylor, executive director of Nevada’s Clean Energy Project. “A strong renewable standard contributes to a vibrant, healthy economy, and it is great to see companies like MGM, Valley Electric and Barrick recognize and support the clean energy economy.”
A stronger clean energy standard is one of several key proposals being considered by Nevada legislators this session.