Across the US, Republican-controlled states are seeing major investments in clean energy such as wind and solar. But conservative groups are banning together to slash renewables and increase oil and gas production should a Republican be elected president in 2024.
The conservative-led Heritage Foundation’s policy playbook for renewable energy seeks to reverse regulations to rein in greenhouse gases, cut federal spending on wind and solar, and bolster oil and gas production. The plan is part of the foundation’s Project 2025, a sweeping agenda designed by dozens of conservative groups to “pave the way for an effective conservative administration” should a Republican be elected president in 2024.
No leading Republican presidential candidate has responded on whether they support the project, according to The New York Times, but several officials involved were former members of the Trump administration and their plans match Trump’s 2024 platform.
But as The Heritage Foundation pushes back against renewables, clean energy companies and projects are leading the way in Republican-led states. About two-thirds of new clean energy investment is in Republican states such as Oklahoma, Texas, and South Dakota, the Times reported.
A solar farm plan in Arkansas, for example, will be the state’s largest and power a major nearby US Steel factory by late 2024, which the company Entergy says will help them meet their sustainability goals and cut the steel factory’s greenhouse gas emissions by 80%, the Times reported.
Meanwhile, Texas produced the most renewable energy of any US state in 2021, according to a 2022 report from the American Clean Power Association, and renewable energy sources have kept its power grid stable this summer despite record heat.
And in Oklahoma, economics takes precedence over politics, as renewables lead to record profits.
“The environmental benefits are nice,” J.W. Peters, president of Solar Power of Oklahoma, told the Times, “but most people are doing this for the financial opportunity.”
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