N.H. Legislators’ Renewable Energy Push Could Face Partisan Divide

Feb 19, 2019

New Hampshire State House
Credit Dan Tuohy / NHPR

A New Hampshire legislative committee advanced a handful of renewable energy proposals along party lines Tuesday.

Democrats on the House Science, Technology and Energy Committee voted to recommend a resolution supporting wind energy, and a study committee on electrical microgrids.

They also backed a bill to study getting at least half the state’s power from renewable sources by 2040. An amendment they approved would make nuclear power ineligible to help meet the goal.

No Republicans on the committee supported those bills.

To renewable energy advocates like Madeleine Mineau of Clean Energy New Hampshire, it shows their suite of initiatives will still need broader support in order to override potential vetoes by Governor Chris Sununu.

“In a climate of hyper-partisanship, when one party shows an interest in one issue, the other party will oppose it for the sake of partisanship,” Mineau says.

The House Committee did put off one major initiative Tuesday. They agreed to re-work a controversial proposed tax on carbon emissions and vote on it next session.

Legislators have not yet made recommendations on other bills focused on net energy metering, which has more bipartisan support.