Governor Martin O'Malley Announces Clean Energy Projects to Spur Economic Growth, Promote Sustainability
First-of-its-kind contracts will spur a suite of large-scale renewable energy projects
ANNAPOLIS, MD (December 8, 2009) –Governor Martin O’Malley, in partnership with the University System of Maryland, today announced the results of the Generating Clean Horizons initiative to spur large-scale, commercial renewable energy projects that will provide electricity to Maryland. The Governor announced the issuance of awards in response to an innovative competition for the supply of clean energy to the State, offering long-term power purchase agreements to a suite of clean energy developers that can place a portfolio of renewable power on the grid before 2014, create green jobs, and promote a more sustainable energy future.
“Our State is a leader in clean energy, and the results of this initiative demonstrate Maryland’s commitment to the clean energy technologies of today as significant building blocks towards a smart, green and growing Maryland,” remarked Governor O’Malley. “With the combined resources of strategic public and private partnerships, we will continue to bring more green jobs to our communities, use public resources more efficiently, and lead by example for other States.”
The University System of Maryland’s Board of Regents and the Department of General Services recently approved the award of four renewable energy projects which will produce over 20 percent of the institutions and state agencies annual electric needs. The contracts will also further the State’s commitment to reducing its carbon footprint 25 percent by 2020.
The awards will be made to US WindForce for a 55 MW on-shore wind energy project, Constellation for a 13 MW solar project in Central Maryland, and BlueWater Wind for up to 55 MW of wind energy as an extension to the proposed Delaware off-shore wind project. A separate award under a small business provision will be made to Synergics for 10 MW as part of its Roth Rock development in Western Maryland.
“This is a significant step under our Environmental Sustainability Initiative,” noted University System of Maryland Chancellor William “Brit” Kirwan, “which reflects our commitment to carbon reduction through a 20-year agreement for the purchase of renewable energy."
Generating Clean Horizons, in addition to numerous statewide energy efficiency projects, is another step toward achieving the ambitious energy goals established by the O’Malley-Brown Administration. Last year, Governor O’Malley successfully championed the EmPOWER Maryland Act, which aims to reduce energy consumption 15 percent by 2015, and more than doubled Maryland’s renewable portfolio standard to require that electric suppliers purchase 20 percent of their power from clean energy sources by 2022.
“This demonstrates the seriousness of Maryland’s commitment to embrace clean energy from multiple technology sources,” noted MEA Director Malcolm Woolf. “We have leveraged the state’s own electricity needs with clean energy developers’ desire for long term contracts which will help deployment in this credit strapped economic climate. The tremendous level of interest from public and private entities demonstrates that Marylanders can and will remain the leading state for greener solutions with predictable pricing to meet our energy challenges.”
“Having the Generating Clean Horizons portfolio will add to the resources available to state government to continue its progress utilizing renewable power,” said Alvin C. Collins, Secretary of the Maryland Department of General Services. “It is a very desirable outcome.”
Maryland will offer access to these renewable energy contracts to county, university and municipal partners who may seek to benefit from these new commercial renewable energy projects.