- Energy is a trillion dollar industry.[i] Global investment in clean energy systems rose to $243 billion in 2010, up from $186.5 billion in 2009.[ii] The International Energy Agency estimates $46 trillion in new capital investment in clean energy infrastructure could occur over the next 40 years.[iii]
- Michigan has $10 billion in new clean energy investment in the pipeline; $6 billion[iv] in advanced energy storage, $4.1 billion[v] in solar, and more than $270 million in wind turbine component manufacturing and energy efficiency implementations. We have a huge opportunity to create jobs, diversify Michigan’s economy and secure new investment.
- Clean technology is the fastest growing sector in Michigan[vi] and the fastest growing sector in the national economy.[vii] Renewable energy technology is becoming a mainstream energy solution across the world, validating the forecasted potential of the new energy economy. This means substantial, sustained, new market opportunities as developed nations transition from fossil fuel-based infrastructure to clean energy technologies and the Third World begins to attain its primary energy needs from renewable, highly distributed, clean energy sources.
- In less than three years Michigan has become the North American center for the development and commercialization of advanced energy storage systems with 16 companies establishing new research and production facilities.[viii] These companies are developing the next generation of energy storage technologies for electric drivetrains and commercial and stationary energy storage applications.
- Michigan ranks 4th in the nation in the number of jobs in the solar industry.[ix] The solar industry has a projected CAGR of 32 percent with solar deployment moving from 36,000 MWs in 2010 to 800,000 MWs by 2020. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu’s “Sunshot” Initiative seeks to lower the “all-in” unsubsidized cost of utility scale solar PV to $1 per watt within the next decade.[x]
- Future opportunities align with Michigan’s strengths in advanced manufacturing, robotics, engineering and materials science. Clean Edge, an authoritative source of research on clean technology industry trends, reports that Michigan is now first among states in clean energy patents – portending robust future opportunities as we commercialize clean energy intellectual property.[xi] Maintaining a leadership position in the evolving clean energy technology sectors is critical if we are to capture market share commensurate with Michigan’s latent strengths and competitive advantages.
- The coming clean energy revolution provides an opportunity for reindustrialization and a manufacturing renaissance. Energy experts characterize the coming transformation of the energy sector as “The Third Industrial Revolution.”[xii] Clean energy technologies should be a key strategy to “reindustrialize” Michigan and recreate – at a higher level of competency and compensation – a new Michigan manufacturing workforce.
- Energy accounts for 8.8% of the United States’ $13 trillion economy.[xiii] In Michigan in 2007 energy expenditures were $37 billion. Michigan imports 100% of our coal and uranium fuels, 96% of our transportation fuels and 75% of our natural gas at a total cost of approximately $26 billion.[xiv] Producing a higher increment of our energy within our state and reducing expenditures for energy imports directly benefits our economy and creates jobs.
- If we don’t avail ourselves of opportunities clean energy manufacturing present, we will surrender markets to our global competitors.
- Ontario is investing over $10 billion to bring 8,400 MW of new clean energy online – enough capacity to meet the annual requirements of two million households.[xv]
- The United Kingdom intends to deploy 32 GWs of offshore wind by 2020, investing 75 billion euros and creating 70,000 jobs.[xvi]
- Germany alone employs over 300,000 people in the renewable energy sector and has revised its national goal to achieve 47% of electrical power from renewable sources by 2020.[xvii] More people will soon be employed in the German clean energy technology sector than in the automotive sector.
- China, starting from near zero, has become the world leader in the production of both wind and solar energy components in less than a decade.[xviii]
- Recent polling shows that Americans regard having an energy bill providing incentives for clean energy ahead of overhauling the federal tax code, speeding up withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan or expanding drilling for domestic oil and gas. According to Gallop, 83 percent of Americans would favor such a bill and only 15 percent would oppose.[xix]
[i] “A Primer on Energy and the Economy: Energy’s Large Share of the Economy.” Institute for Energy Research. 16 Feb. 2010. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://www.instituteforenergyresearch.org/2010/02/16/a-primer-on-energy-and-the-economy-energys-large-share-of-the-economy-requires-caution-in-determining-policies-that-affect-it/>.
[ii]Morales, Alex. “Low-Carbon Energy Investment Hit a Record $243 Billion in 2010.” Business & Financial News. Bloomberg, 11 Jan. 2011. Web. 21 Mar. 2011. <http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-01-11/low-carbon-energy-investment-hit-a-record-243-billion-in-2010-bnef-says.html>.
[iii] “IEA Clean Energy Options.” World Coal Association. Web. 21 Mar. 2011. <http://www.worldcoal.org/resources/ecoal/ecoal—archive/iea-clean-energy-options/>.
[iv] Granholm, Jennifer. “Granholm: Next Week Marks One-Year Anniversary of Milestone in Vehicle Electrification.” Building MI Future: Michigan’s Recovery & Reinvestment Plan. State of Michigan, 30 July 2010. Web. 21 Mar. 2011. <http://www.michigan.gov/recovery/0,1607,7-172-52829-241500–,00.html>.
[v] Schneider, Keith. “Midwest Emerges as Center for Clean Energy.” Energy & Environment. New York Times, 30 Nov. 2010. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/01/business/energy-environment/01solarcell.html?_r=3&partner=rss&emc=rss>.
[vi] Waclawek, Richard, and Bruce Weaver, comps. Michigan Green Jobs Report 2009. Rep. Detroit: Bureau of Labor Market Information & Strategic Initiatives, 2009. Department of Energy, Labor & Economic Growth, May 2009. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://www.michigan.gov/documents/nwlb/GJC_GreenReport_Print_277833_7.pdf>.
[vii] Urahn, Susan, and Joshua Reichert. “Clean Energy Economy: Repowering Jobs, Businesses and Investments Across America.” The Pew Charitable Trusts, June 2009. <http://www.pewtrusts.org/our_work_detail.aspx?id=690>.
[viii] “Michigan Energy Storage & Advanced Energy Systems.” The Michigan Advantage. Michigan Economic Development Coporation. <http://www.michiganadvantage.org/Targeted-Initiatives/Advanced-Energy-Storage/Default.aspx>.
[ix] National Solar Jobs Census 2010. Rep. The Solar Foundation, Oct. 2010. Web. 21 Mar. 2011. P. 63. <http://www.thesolarfoundation.org/sites/thesolarfoundation.org/files/Final%20TSF%20National%20Solar%20Jobs%20Census%202010%20Web%20Version.pdf>.
[x] Simmons, G. “Sec. Chu Announces More “Sunshot” Details.” Weblog post. Energy Blog. Department of Energy, 4 Feb. 2011. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://blog.energy.gov/blog/2011/02/04/sec-chu-announces-more-sunshot-details>.
[xi] “California, Oregon, and Massachusetts Lead List of Top 10 Clean-Energy States.” Clean Edge. Business Wire, 7 Dec. 2010. Web. 21 Mar. 2011. http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20101207005888/en/California-Oregon-Massachusetts-Lead-List-Top-10>.
[xii] “State Energy Data 2008: Prices and Expenditures.” Department of Energy. Energy Information Association, 2008. <http://www.eia.doe.gov/states/sep_sum/html/pdf/sum_ex_tot.pdf>.
[xiii] “Energy Consumption, Expenditures.” Department of Energy. Energy Information Association,2009. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/aer/pdf/pages/sec1_13.pdf>.
[xiv] “Michigan Energy Overview.” Department of Labor and Economic Growth. Michigan Public Service Commission, Sept. 2008. <http://www.dleg.state.mi.us/mpsc/reports/energy/energyoverview/>.
[xv] Duguid, Brad. Ontario’s Long Term Energy Plan. Rep. Queen’s Printer for Ontario, 2010. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://www.mei.gov.on.ca/en/pdf/MEI_LTEP_en.pdf>.
[xvi] Bradbury, John. “Crown Estate Announces Round 3 Wind Licences.” Offshore247. 1 Aug. 2010. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://www.offshore247.com/news/art.aspx?Id=15751>.
[xvii] “New Think:Act Content on Green Business.” RolandBerger, 30 Aug. 2010. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://www.rolandberger.com/news/2010-08-30-rbsc-news-taC_GreenBusiness.html>.
[xviii] Hargreaves, Steve. “China Winning Renewable Energy Race.” CNNMoney. CNN, 22 Sept. 2010. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://money.cnn.com/2010/09/21/news/international/china_renewables/index.htm>.
[xix] Jones, Jeffrey M. “In U.S., Alternative Energy Bill Does Best Among Eight Proposals.” Gallup. 2 Feb. 2011. Web. 22 Mar. 2011. <http://www.gallup.com/poll/145880/Alternative-Energy-Bill-Best-Among-Eight-Proposals.aspx>.