SACE Plan Urges Efficiency, Clean Energy to Reduce Climate Change Emissions

The first comprehensive blueprint for designing North Carolina's energy future was released last month by the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, a 25x'25 endorsing partner. The report, "Cornerstones: Building a Secure Foundation for North Carolina’s Energy Future," outlines how North Carolina can utilize energy efficiency and clean energy technology to help reduce by 60 percent by 2030 the state's emissions that contribute to climate change.

"Global and national action is essential, but if North Carolina wishes to seize the economic growth opportunities, our leaders must unlock that future,” stated Stephen A. Smith, executive director. He said state leaders must pursue the "cornerstones" of energy efficiency, clean energy, pollution capture and long-range planning.

Smith said energy efficiency ‑ the option of first choice in the 25x'25 Action Plan ‑ has the greatest potential to reduce the state's polluting emissions. "Cutting energy use, recycling wasted energy and increasing fuel economy accounts for over half the pollution reductions we identified. These technologies are available today and are cost-effective." The report estimates that of the nearly 214 million tons of emissions that could be cut by implementing the "cornerstones" plan, 126.6 million tons could come from more efficient use of energy.

The plan also calls for using a growing amount of low-pollution generation from wind, bioenergy and hydroelectric power, as well as converting hog and landfill waste methane to energy, further reducing emissions by 37.2 million tons by 2030. SACE Research Director John D. Wilson says, "Using independent resources, cost and technology assessments, we show that North Carolina can build an affordable clean energy future."

To learn more about SACE and access the report, go to

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