FLORIDA COULD REDUCE ITS FOSSIL-FUEL GENERATED ELECTRICAL CONSUMPTION SIGNIFICANTLY OVER THE NEXT 15 YEARS THROUGH CONSERVATION, SOLAR, WIND AND BIOMASS

02/07/07
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If lawmakers spend up to $350 million a year, Florida can cut its energy needs nearly in half in the next 15 years, a researcher told WMNF today.

Florida should invest in more energy-efficient homes, including compact fluorescent light bulbs and better windows and doors, as well as wind and solar power, said researcher Neal Elliott with the nonprofit American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy.

The costs are big but so is the payoff, reducing Florida's energy consumption 45 percent within 15 years, Elliott said.

Elliott praised Gov. Charlie Crist for recommending a $68 million alternative-energy program last week, which emphasizes renewable auto fuels. But Elliot said it loses sight of the bigger picture - major electric power generation.

''I think it's a good start. He needs to be more focused,'' Elliott said. ''The focus on ethanol is somewhat of a diversion.''

According to a 65-page report the group released Monday, Florida's thirst for electrical power is outstripping its population growth. FMI http://www.aceee.org

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