On June 4, 2014, Governor McAuliffe signed Executive Order #16 establishing the Virginia Energy Council. The Virginia Energy Council will assist in the development and implementation of a cohesive, comprehensive, and aggressive energy strategy for Virginia and deliver recommendations for the Virginia Energy Plan. The Plan is due to be submitted to the General Assembly on October 1, 2014. Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones will chair the Council.
“Virginia must develop an aggressive strategy to protect existing jobs in our energy industries while positioning the Commonwealth to be a leader in new energy technologies,” said Governor McAuliffe. “As we move forward with this process, the Virginia Energy Council will be an important partner as we work toward meeting our energy goals.”
The Virginia Energy Council will be comprised of 20-25 people, appointed by the Governor, and receives staffing support from the Secretary of Commerce and Trade, Secretary of Natural Resources, the Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy, and such other agencies and offices as designated by the Governor. The Council will be responsible for updating the Virginia Energy Plan according to the Commonwealth Energy Policy objectives set forth in the Code of Virginia. These objectives include:
Accelerating the development and use of renewable energy sources, such as solar and offshore wind.
Increasing energy productivity through greater.
Promoting a diverse energy mix to prevent over-reliance on particular sources.
Growing jobs in the energy sector.