In February, the North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association (NCSEA) released a report, which finds that increased renewable energy and energy efficiency is a major driver of jobs and economic development in the state. The Economic, Utility Portfolio and Rate Impact of Clean Energy Development in North Carolina found that clean energy development brought the state 21,200 net jobs from 2007 to 2012.
The study by RTI International and La Capra Associates Inc. finds that the key policy drivers in the state have been its renewable energy & energy efficiency portfolio standard, renewable energy investment tax credit, and utility savings initiative.
Between 2007 and 2012, clean energy investment increased 13-fold and generated or saved an estimated 8.2 million MWh of energy through a combination of renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. In addition, there was an estimated $427 million in energy savings from governmental energy efficiency programs. Although the energy-related impacts have been documented in annual energy surveys, to date this is the first time that the impact of clean energy development on North Carolina’s economy has been comprehensively measured to determine direct, indirect, and induced impacts.