The emerging clean energy economy supports thousands of good-paying jobs in Minnesota and around the country. And wind, solar, and biofuels are helping to reduce carbon emissions, lower energy bills, and support rural economies. As a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, Sen. Smith wrote the legislative framework for the Farm Bill Energy Title, and has introduced legislation to support energy storage innovation. Sen. Smith believes that clean energy is a win-win for Minnesota and is committed to fighting for federal policies that support these innovative technologies.
Minnesota has long been a leader in renewable energy. The state ranks eighth in the nation for clean-energy patents, and in the last decade, clean energy startups have attracted more than $450 million in investments to Minnesota. Today, renewable energy accounts for a quarter of all electricity generated in Minnesota–the state is ranked fifth in the nation for solar installations, and nearly 20 percent of our electricity now comes from wind power. Meanwhile, Minnesota’s biofuel industry generates nearly $5 billion for the state economy every year and supports thousands of jobs, all while producing a fuel that is more environmentally friendly than fossil fuels and reducing our dependence on foreign oil.
Sen. Smith believes that clean energy isn’t just smart environmental policy, it’s smart economic policy. In Minnesota, clean energy sector jobs are growing twice as fast as jobs in other parts of the economy, which is why Sen. Smith is pushing the federal government to follow Minnesota’s lead and do more to accelerate the clean energy transition. She believes we should do this through national clean energy targets, by funding more clean energy research, by extending tax credits that incentivize clean and renewable energy, and by supporting biofuels. You can count on Sen. Smith to continue fighting for these policies in the Senate.
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that the Heartland Hydrogen Hub, made up of public and private partners in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota, will receive significant federal funding from the U.S. Department of Energy to produce low carbon hydrogen for power generation, natural gas distribution systems, and agricultural use. “This investment will be an important part of our energy future, unlocking innovation and new sources of energy that will benefit our whole state,” said Klobuchar. “The combined public/private investments will create good-paying jobs and power Minnesota for years to come.” “The clean energy transition is happening—the question is whether we lead or follow. I want us to lead,” said Smith. “This funding will jumpstart the production of hydrogen from clean energy resources in Minnesota to help decarbonize various sectors of the economy, while creating more than 1,500 good paying jobs in our state. I’m proud of our work to pass the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which made investments like these possible.” The Heartland Hydrogen Hub was one of just seven proposed clean hydrogen hubs nationwide selected to receive funding through the Department of Energy’s Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs program. The Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs program and this funding were made possible through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which Klobuchar and Smith helped pass in 2021. The Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs program will create a national network of clean hydrogen producers, consumers, and connective infrastructure while supporting the production, storage, and delivery of clean hydrogen.
Sen. Smith, Rep. Spanberger Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Bill to Strengthen Popular Program to Lower Energy Costs, Expand Clean Energy
WASHINGTON, D.C. — This week, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) introduced a bipartisan, bicameral bill to strengthen the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) Rural Energy for America Program (REAP). A version of the bill was introduced in the House by U.S. Representatives Abigail Spanberger (D-VA-07) and David Valadao (R-CA-22). REAP provides financial assistance to farmers, producers, and rural small business owners to install renewable energy systems and adopt energy efficiency measures. Since 2021, REAP has leveraged more than $1.2 billion in public investment to stimulate more than twice that amount in private investment — delivering more than $3.4 billion in energy efficiency and renewable energy projects for rural America. The REAP Modernization Act would build on this success by increasing the cost share for REAP grants and raising certain grant limits. Additionally, the bipartisan bill would make it easier for farmers and small businesses to access the program by streamlining the application process and increasing assistance, outreach, and education for farmers and small businesses throughout the application process. “The clean energy transition is happening, the question is whether we lead or follow. I want us to lead,” said Smith. “But as we make the switch to cleaner, cheaper energy, we need to make sure everyone benefits. That’s one reason programs like REAP, which helps rural communities install renewable energy systems, are so important. REAP is the flagship program in the Farm Bill Energy Title, and I’m glad to partner with Representatives Spanberger and Valadao to introduce this bill to help improve
Washington D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) released the following statement in response to Senator Joe Manchin backing out – again – of negotiations on climate change legislation: “It’s infuriating and nothing short of tragic that Senator Manchin is walking away, again, from taking essential action on climate and clean energy. The world is literally burning up while he joins every single Republican to stop strong action to cut emissions and speed the transition to clean energy for the survival of our planet, clean air and health, energy independence, and lower energy prices. One Senator should not have
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN), both members of the Senate Agriculture Committee, announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has awarded major federal funding to support biofuel producers in Minnesota through a program created by bipartisan legislation led by Klobuchar. The funding will provide economic support to lower costs and offset market losses through the Biofuel Producer Relief Payments program. This program, created in December 2020, is based on the Renewable Fuel Feedstock Reimbursement Act, Klobuchar’s bipartisan legislation with Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) to provide relief to biofuel and renewable fuel producers that suffered
Sen. Smith, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Expand Access to Clean, Affordable Heating and Energy
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) joined Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and six of their colleagues in introducing legislation to expand access to clean, affordable heating and lower energy costs for consumers. The Heating Efficiency and Affordability through Tax Relief (HEATR) Act would create a manufacturer tax credit to incentivize production of high-efficiency, safe, and affordable heat pumps. In addition to Smith, the legislation is also sponsored by Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), John Hickenlooper (D-CO), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Cory Booker (D-NJ). “Far too many households across our state struggle to afford their heating costs.
Senator Tina Smith, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Incentivize Electrification, Boost American Manufacturing, and Lower Energy Costs
WASHINGTON [05.04.22] – Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) joined her colleagues to introduce legislation that would reduce residential building emissions and increase energy security. The bill, authored by Senator Ed Markey (D-MA), would expand incentives for manufacturers and distributors of American-made building electrification products, such as HVAC equipment and water heating appliances. “The transition to clean energy is happening, the question is whether our country leads or follows. I want us to lead,” said Senator Smith. “If we do nothing, climate change will be an economic, environmental and public health disaster. The good news is that taking action on climate also presents