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State ought to embrace renewable energy, not legislate against it

Feb 5, 2017 Linda Olinger, Riverton


State Rep. Dave Miller has co-sponsored a bill to the Wyoming Legislature that would fine utilities for purchasing electricity that was produced using renewable sources.

I am sure Rep. Miller believes his bill is in the best interest of Wyoming, but in my view, this is a short-sighted step backwards at a time when Wyoming needs to take the long view and move forward.

Wyoming legislators have talked the talk about moving beyond the boom-and-bust economics that has plagued the state for decades, but I think most prudent people would agree that diversification of the economy is the route that would lead to a more sustainable, vibrant economy.

Wyoming should be investing in and leading the country in renewable energies, not hampering them with fines and taxes as they struggle to gain a foothold.

Wyoming has huge potential for both wind and solar energy harvesting. Our state may have the greatest potential of all states in those two combined. And many good-paying jobs will follow when that potential is tapped.

Here is the bottom line: Should Wyoming just continue to dig stuff out of theground to ship to other places to be converted to electricity, or does it make more sense to create the electricity here to be sold as a value-added product?

We either prime the pump and get renewable energy renewable energy rolling, or, as Rep. Miller wants, shut down renewables and continue the boom-and-bust economy.

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