Rep. Morris’ energy-conservation bill passes House

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OLYMPIA – Energy-conservation crusader Jeff Morris achieved another victory in the state House today, passing a bill that adds several consumer products and power supplies to a growing list that must meet certain minimum energy consumption standards.

Rep. Jeff Morris (D – Mount Vernon) urged House lawmakers to keep Washington a world leader in energy efficiency by voting in support of his legislation.

“Energy efficiency is our best and easiest way of dealing with future power needs and reducing current demand,” Morris said.

“We must keep up with other states, particularly California, or risk becoming a dumping ground for products that waste energy and money.”

Morris helped institute the first standards in Washington in 2005, and has since added new products over the years.

This year’s bill sets minimum efficiency standards for the following electrical products

manufactured on or after January 1, 2012, that are sold or offered for sale in the state:

· Compact audio products;

· DVD and DVR players; and

· External power supplies for electronic devices.

Republicans opposing the legislation relied on arguing this is not the time to set more regulations on businesses. But Morris and other supporters argue that energy-saving efforts already in law have saved Washington homes and businesses millions of dollars over the years.

Morris’ past legislation is estimated to save Washington over 400 million gallons of water, 1.9 million therms of natural gas, and 136 million KW hours of electricity.

By 2020, those savings could equal:

· Nearly 3% of our current commercial sector consumption of natural gas

· Enough electricity to power over 90,000 homes

· Annual water savings reaching 2 billion gallons — enough to meet Olympia’s current water needs for one year

· A cumulative reduction of greenhouse gases by 14 billion pounds of CO2 — comparable to removing over one million average vehicles off our roads for a year

HB 1003 now moves to the Senate for further consideration in the 2011 legislative session.

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