U.S. Secretary of Energy and Sen. Kaine visit SWVA to talk clean energy

Published: Aug. 24, 2022 at 10:31 PM EDT
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BOTETOURT COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) - It’s been a little more than a week since the Inflation Reduction Act was signed into law. Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm and U.S. Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) got out to talk about its benefits.

“The inflation reduction act really focuses on the incentives through the private sector to build out this clean energy future,” said Granholm.

The first stop was in Lexington at Washington and Lee’s Solar Canopy Array, which is one of the first ones built in the state.

“So great to be able to have W and L walk the talk on this,” said Granholm.

They then made their way to Botetourt County, for the ribbon-cutting of a plant that will build transformers to power electric car charging stations, along with a roundtable discussion with area leaders.

“With Virginia Transformer doing what they are doing, is the center of how we’re going to build out the backbone of our clean energy future,” said Granholm.

Kaine was appreciative that Granholm took the time to come to this area of the state, which he said has been a leader in clean energy for a long-time.

“Secretary Granholm could’ve come anywhere today, she could’ve said, ‘hey let’s meet in Richmond, let’s meet in Hampton Roads,’ but she said, ‘no I want to come here and emphasize where the CHIPS act, the infrastructure bill, the inflation reduction act can help advance a clean energy economy not just elsewhere, but a clean energy economy that already has some real roots here,’” said Kaine.

It was also about showcasing the incentives residents can receive for shifting to clean energy, and how it won’t hit them in their wallets.

“Just look at what the price per unit for solar energy or wind energy has done in the last 10 years. The price per consumer has come down and down and down and the investments that we’re going to make by incentivizing more innovation is going to cause them to come down even more,” said Kaine.

The Biden Administration continues to keep climate change and clean energy at the top of its priorities.

“The Inflation Reduction Act will ensure that there’s 9,000,000 jobs in clean energy by 2030. It’s a whole economic opportunity; it’s certainly an opportunity for the planet and for us as a nation to build out those supply chains,” said Granholm.