Renewable energy and energy efficiency are a key part of a vision to create jobs and grow the state’s economy released today by Democratic legislators.

Among the recommendations to diversify the state’s economy and attract new businesses to Nevada are several key policies being championed by the RenewNV coalition of renewable energy advocates.

The vision calls for updates to the state’s renewable portfolio standard, the law that requires utilities to get a certain percentage of their electricity from renewable sources, as part of an effort to increase investment in solar, geothermal and other in-state resources. The plan also calls for more energy efficiency programs and shared solar installations that would create jobs, reduce energy use and expand access to clean power.

Additionally, the vision calls for training and apprenticeship programs that will prepare Nevada’s motivated and dedicated workforce for the jobs of the future, including high tech manufacturing jobs.

This vision is consistent with the policy priorities RenewNV has been advocating since it formed last spring – policies that will revitalize Nevada’s economy, create the jobs of the future, and make the state a national leader in clean energy production.

Just last week, Republican legislators also released a vision for the state that called for more clean energy development, including investments in rooftop solar.

Members of the RenewNV coalition offered the following comments after release of the Blueprint on Thursday:

“It’s good to see Nevada legislators recognizing the power of renewable energy to not only power our homes but also fuel our economy,” said Jennifer Taylor, executive director of Clean Energy Project. “Nevada has an opportunity to build a strong renewable energy industry that will sustain good, in-state jobs that can weather any economic conditions. We have a responsibility to seize that opportunity by passing smart policies that will put us on track to lead the nation in clean power production.”

“Smart policymakers know that investing in renewable energy and energy efficiency will not only build a healthy economy, it will build healthier communities,” said Lisa Hoyos, director of Climate Parents. “Reducing our reliance on out-of-state fossil fuels means cleaner air for Nevadans to breathe and a pristine outdoors to enjoy for generations to come.”

“Thank you to these legislators for charting a course toward a robust renewable energy economy that capitalizes on all of Nevada’s unique strengths: a talented workforce, an innovative mindset, and more than 300 days of sunshine every year,” said Annette Magnus, executive director of Battle Born Progress. “Investing in cleaner power sources is an investment in our future, and this kind of forward thinking is what will help make Nevada an economic powerhouse for years to come.”

“Reducing our energy use and switching to cleaner power sources is not only good for our environment, it’s a critical part of making our state and our nation energy independent,” said Elspeth DiMarzio, campaign representative for the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign. “It’s time to give Nevadans the choice to invest in reliable clean power that is good for our economy, our security, and our environment.”

“For years, Nevada has been a leader in solar energy production,” said Andy Maggi, executive director of the Nevada Conservation League. “But in the last year, we’ve lost ground. Voters made clear in the last election that they know exactly what is at stake for our economy and jobs when we don’t take advantage of our ability to lead on clean energy. It’s time to take back our leadership role, and that starts with smart policy. This Blueprint clearly shows that voters are being heard and is exactly the kind of comprehensive strategy we need to position the state as an energy exporter with a diverse and growing economy. We applaud and are grateful for the comprehensive leadership the Blueprint shows.”

“This Blueprint is the kind of common-sense policy that lawmakers on both sides of the aisle can agree on,” said Hillerie C. Patton, president, The Dignitas Agency. “I am glad to see that both Democrats and Republicans are making clean energy and energy efficiency a priority this legislative session. This is the best strategy to create new jobs and boost our economy while safeguarding Nevada’s unique outdoors.”