Blacksburg and Roanoke Skipped by Governor McAlliff's Energy Plan Listening Tour

Illustration by Temple City, CA


The Virginia Energy Plan

The quadrennial Virginia Energy plan, last published in 2010,  provides a  "comprehensive strategy for the energy industry"  including using sustainable practices for Virginia, such as conservation, efficiency, solar, wind and geothermal.

Originally to have been due July 1, it will now be due October 1, as a result of H.B. 796 passed by the Virginia General Assembly March 7, 2014.

McAuliffe created the  Virginia Energy Council  to gather public and businesses advice

June 4, 2014, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe established the Virginia Energy Council to receive, review and evaluate "input offered by Virginia’s residents and businesses"  on the 2014 Virginia Energy Plan being compiled by the Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy (MME).  The Council will monitor implementation and review the October, 1, 2017  interim update, "providing strategic guidance to ensure successful achievement of Plan goals.  I've requested a coy of the 2013 update and will post it if I receive a copy.

The Council started  listening June 12

June 12, the Council, chaired by Maurice Jones (bio), Virginia's Secretary of Commerce and Trade,  held its first listening session in conjunctions with MME in Fredericksburg. The next session will be tonight in Annandale, Tuesday, June 17 at  6 pm at Northern Virginia Community College, 8333 Little River Turnpike.  Appalachian Voices sent out a memo at 10:26 am today advising folks to arrive at least 30 minutes to sign up and reserve a three minute slot on the speakers list.

There is no listening session scheduled for Blacksburg or Roanoke but you can file comments

Folks can request events by writing Jones's office at commerce.trade@governor.virginia.gov. You CAN file comments on line or by snail mail:
Attn: Virginia Energy Plan
Department of Mines, Minerals & Energy
Washington Building 8th Floor
1100 Bank Street
Richmond, VA 23219
The four remaining sessions

Here's a schedule, if you have friends elsewhere who can attend:
  • South Boston: Thursday, June 19, 6 pm, Southern Virginia Higher Education Center, 820 Bruce Street;
  • Abingdon: Tuesday, June 24, 6 pm, Virginia Highlands Community College, 100 VHCC Drive, Building ISC;
  • Norfolk: Thursday, June 26, 6 pm, Old Dominion University, Bluestone Avenue and 49th Street; and 
  • Harrisonburg: Tuesday, July 1, 6 pm, James Madison University, 127 West Bruce Street.
Other duties of the Council

The .Governor has charged the Council with:
  • Developing strategies to make Virginia a national leader in energy efficiency and ensure that the cost of energy for Virginia consumers remains highly competitive;
  • Developing strategies to increase the diversity of energy used to power Virginia, while ensuring a commitment to the most efficient use of existing energy sources;
  • Developing strategies to increase Virginia’s renewable energy economy and grow the entire energy industry in Virginia by retaining, expanding, and attracting businesses in the energy sector;
  • Developing strategies to increase the international export of Virginia’s coal;
  • Identifying opportunities to expand Virginia’s needed energy infrastructure and to increase the reliability of the Commonwealth’s existing energy infrastructure;
  • Reviewing an analysis of any regulations proposed or promulgated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel-fired electric generating units under § 111(d) of the Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C. § 7411(d);
  • Providing expertise and advice on other policy strategies deemed appropriate during the drafting of the Plan to grow the energy industry in the Commonwealth; and,
  • Monitoring the implementation of the Plan, providing strategic guidance to ensure successful achievement of Plan goals, and reviewing the interim update of the Plan required to be presented by October 1, 2017.
For more information on the Council

Contact Rachel Thomas, the Governor's Traveling Press Secretary:
(804) 225-4262

For more information on the listening sessions

Contact Tarah Kesterson, the DMME's Public Relations Manager:
(276) 523-8146