Proponents of expanding new clean energy sources gathered today at Falmouth High School and urged Mainers to ask their lawmakers to override an expected veto of a bill that would establish a comprehensive solar energy policy for the state.
With the school's massive solar panel array as a backdrop, supporters of the Natural Resources Council of Maine said that on the eve of Earth Day and the signing of the Paris Climate Change Agreement, now is no time to step back from solar energy alternatives in Maine.
Whether its energy efficient light bulbs, solar installations in schools and town offices or even free charging stations for electric cars, Lisa Pohlmann, executive director of the Natural Resources Council of Maine, says Maine communities are moving towards offering more low-carbon, resilient and sustainable options that ensure Maine's clean energy future.
"It's great to hear about what our towns are doing to invest in renewable energy and energy efficiency, hopefully increasing biking and walking lanes, composting and adopting many other sustainability initiatives," Pohlmann says. "At NRCM, we are very happy to help in those efforts."
Pohlmann says communities such as Falmouth, South Portland and Portland have all made great strides towards incorporating more renewable energy options into their municipal infrastructure. She said those efforts stand in contrast to an expected looming veto of a solar energy bill by Gov. Paul LePage, who says the energy source only benefits wealthy Mainers.
"We just need to keep moving forward and to run into this obstacle is just a shame, it's a shame for Maine people of all income levels," she says.
Lawmakers will reconvene on April 29 to vote on whether to override the governor's expected veto of the solar bill. The NRCM is planning a Last Stand for Solar rally at the State House on that same day.