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Spurred by Gov. Terry McAuliffe, the Virginia Commonwealth’s agencies will dramatically increase the use of renewable energy to power operations. Following a report compiled by the Governor’s Climate Change and Resiliency Update Commission, the initiative calls for state government to derive approximately 8% of its electricity from solar energy within the next three years.

The Commission offers a series of recommendations to address the impacts of climate change on the Commonwealth, such as a portfolio of solar projects to be built on state-owned property.

“The renewable energy procurement target will lower the state’s carbon emissions and help grow the solar industry in Virginia, a key strategy for building a new Virginia economy,” Gov. McAuliffe says.

The initiative will facilitate 110MW of solar generation through agreements with Dominion Virginia Power and independent, third-party developers. In addition, McAuliffe plans to accelerate the deployment of renewable energy, including building at least 15MW of solar on state property.

Projects will be developed to demonstrate installations ranging in size from utility-scale solar farms to small-scale, behind-the-meter installations. The initial phase will take place in Dominion Virginia Power’s service territory through an agreement between the Commonwealth of Virginia and Dominion Virginia Power. The Secretary of Commerce and Trade will spearhead the initiative with the Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy as the lead agency. www.governor.virginia.gov