Clean Energy Economy Discussed at 2017 #MACoCon

From Left to Right: Michael Richard, Dereck Davis, Mary Beth Tung, and Kelly Shulz

County officials received an overview on the jobs generated by the clean energy economy on August 17 at the 2017 MACo Summer Conference. The panel was called “The Clean Energy Economy – Generating Jobs, Producing Power” and moderated by House Economic Matters Committee Chair Dereck Davis.

Maryland Energy Administration Director Dr. Mary Beth Tung summarized the impact of renewable energy on Maryland’s economy.

Maryland Secretary of Labor, Licensing and Regulation Kelly Schulz provided an overview of apprecticeship and training programs available for renewable energies.

Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) Commissioner Michael Richard discussed the role of the PSC and need for in-state renewable energy sources to meet Maryland’s Renewable Portfolio Standard requirements. Richard also discussed MACo’s 2017 solar energy legislation (HB 1350).

Maryland Clean Energy Center Kathy Magruder provided further statistics on energy sector jobs and career paths, noting that the solar and wind industries are creating jobs at a rate 12 times faster than other industries and is now 7% of the state’s total workforce.

Maryland DC Virginia Solar Energy Industries Association Executive Director David Murray noted that solar installation jobs cannot be exported and that their average wage is $18 per hour. Murray also discussed the different types of solar projects, including residential, commercial and industrial, and utility scale solar.