Going Green in the Silver State

LAS VEGAS -- Nevada is being called a leader in renewable energy. And lawmakers say that's good for taxpayers.

With its sunshine, wind, and open land, leaders at the state and federal level say Nevada is ahead of the game when it comes to renewable energy.

"Renewable energy is one of the focuses of our economic development," Governor Brian Sandoval said.

The governor, U.S. Senator Harry Reid, and leaders in the renewable energy industry gathered at the solar-powered "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign to highlight a new report from the Clean Energy Project that shows Nevada has invested at $5.5 billion in clean energy since 2010. According to the report. That's a 10 to one return for taxpayers.

"I think that the taxpayers can be confident that they're getting a good return on their dollar," Sandoval said.

Las Vegas based Bombard Renewable Energy installed the solar units for the iconic Las Vegas sign.

"This is a great statement in the community but it's also a nice advertisement for the work that we do," said Chris Brooks, Bombard Renewable Energy.

He says tax credits for businesses and homeowners going solar does play a major role in his growing industry.

"My career and those who work for me, those jobs wouldn't be possible without the good policy that's been put in place over the years by our state and federal legislators as well as the governor," Brooks said.

The more solar, wind, and geothermal energy we see, the more jobs may be created. Leaders say Nevada's more than 80 solar companies have brought about 2,500 jobs to state.

"It may not be long before the Silver State becomes known as the solar state," said Ken Johnson with the Solar Energy Industry Association.

Even more clean energy is coming to the state. On Friday, a groundbreaking will take place at the Moapa River Indian Reservation for a new solar project.


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