As part of ongoing work to expand regional collaboration on clean energy innovation, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and B.C. Premier John Horgan announced a joint Clean Grid Initiative and Clean Grid Summit to be held in 2020.
With the launch of the Clean Grid Initiative, Governor Inslee and Premier Horgan reaffirm Washington and British Columbia’s long-standing commitment to collaborate on advancing the innovation economy, environmental protection and transportation connectivity, and expanding that commitment to include transitioning the regional economy to be powered as much as possible from abundant, affordable, clean electricity.
The Clean Grid Initiative will include forming an intergovernmental working group to share challenges and best practices, and develop a clean grid action plan for the region. To inform the development of the plan, the working group will convene experts from government, industry and research institutions, and solicit input from stakeholders, tribes and First Nations, and other regional partners.
“Abundant, clean electricity gives us a regional competitive advantage. It’s part of our CleanBC plan, it’s part of what makes this a great place for businesses to invest and for people to live and work,” Premier Horgan said. “By working together, we can rise to the challenge of climate change, maximize our regional advantages and build a sustainable economy that works for people – now and into the future.”
Electricity supply in the northwest is among the cleanest and most affordable in the world. It is a hallmark of the region’s competitive advantage as a leader in innovation, job creation and sustainability. With the launch of the Clean Grid Initiative, Washington state and British Columbia will use the region’s clean electricity to advance the transition to clean energy across the economy.
“As we step up to defeat climate change, we must start now to comprehensively power our growing economy with clean, reliable and affordable electricity,” Governor Inslee said. “This initiative will engage our partners in the Cascadia Innovation Corridor and hopefully the entire West Coast, in this important transition. It builds on our existing strong partnership with neighbours to the north and will benefit the entire region.”
At the Joint Clean Grid Summit, Washington state and B.C. will share initial recommendations for how the region can best work together to achieve the goals of the plan.
- Over the past year, both jurisdictions have made long-term commitments to transition key sectors of their economies to clean energy:
- Through the British Columbia government’s CleanBC Plan, B.C. has adopted aggressive targets for reducing emissions. CleanBC aims to make transportation, buildings and industry cleaner by using clean energy.
- Through legislation enacted in Washington state this year, Governor Inslee has committed to transitioning the state to 100% clean electricity, significantly improving energy efficiency in buildings and increasing the number of electric vehicles on roads.
- In addition, both Washington state and British Columbia are pursuing electrification of their public sector vehicle fleets, providing incentives for the purchase of zero-emission vehicles and developing related infrastructure, delivering clean electricity to various sectors of the economy to help lower emissions, advancing codes and standards to improve energy efficiency in buildings and equipment, and promoting the production and use of renewable fuels and clean energy technologies across the economy.
- The Clean Grid Initiative follows a memorandum of understanding signed by Premier Horgan and Governor Inslee on Oct. 10, 2018 to act jointly to grow the region’s innovation economy, protect the environment and combat climate change, promote trade and improve transportation connectivity.
Washington legislation on clean energy: https://medium.com/wagovernor/washington-powers-a-new-path-toward-clean-energy-future-d293029b7484
Memorandum of understanding signed by Premier Horgan and Governor Inslee: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2018PREM0126-001970