WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), and Ed Markey (D-Mass.) this week introduced the Green Bank Act of 2019. This legislation would create a national green bank to deploy public financing for regional, state, and municipal green banks, including the Connecticut Green Bank. This federal financing would unleash large-scale, private investments in clean energy and energy efficiency projects, particularly for low- to moderate-income families, creating thousands of clean energy jobs while combating climate change. The bill ensures that green banks in U.S. Territories would be eligible for federal financing, and it would provide assistance to eligible jurisdictions seeking to establish their own green banks.
“I’m proud that Connecticut was the first state in the country to create a green bank, which has led to thousands of jobs and billions of dollars invested in clean energy products around the state. Our bill takes this model nationally so states from all around the country can create their own green banks and pull from these resources to help create clean jobs and reduce carbon pollution. Climate change poses a serious security risk to our country, and public and private investments will be critical to solving it,” said Murphy.
“Increasing our investment in renewable energy technologies will not only put us on a path to a more sustainable future but also create good-paying American jobs. This legislation will provide state and local Green Banks the support they need to jump-start innovative clean energy projects,” said Van Hollen. “I was proud to lead this effort in the House of Representatives, and to continue the fight in the Senate. As this Administration blatantly ignores the harmful effects of climate change, the creation of a national Green Bank is one way we can move forward on building a 21st century clean energy economy.”
“The Green Bank Act is a common sense measure that builds on the success of Connecticut and other states who have shown that green banks are a win-win for our economy and our planet,” said Blumenthal. “For nearly a decade, Connecticut’s groundbreaking Green Bank has shown the nation how to catalyze large investments in clean energy projects at a massive scale. It has spurred good-paying green jobs and lowered energy costs for consumers in the state, while reducing CO2 emissions and preserving our planet.”
"A national green infrastructure bank would provide states like Rhode Island with capital to make strategic long-term investments in clean energy and sustainable infrastructure," said Whitehouse. "Building new, more efficient infrastructure from coast to coast will create good jobs and save energy, all while reducing the carbon pollution driving climate change."
“Green financing is an important leverage opportunity for investment into climate solutions for communities. We must find ways to accelerate the pace of climate mitigation and adaptation around this country today. I thank Senator Murphy for his leadership introducing legislation to provide municipalities with this important tool to address the climate crisis,” said Markey.
“Senator Murphy’s proposal to create a United States Green Bank would unlock significant private investment in clean energy, energy efficiency, and other climate change mitigation and adaptation projects at the state and local levels,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Connecticut Green Bank. “As we have seen in Connecticut, and in states, counties, and cities across the country, such an investment in our country will lower energy costs on families and businesses, create high-paying and long-term jobs in our communities, and confront the impacts of climate change.”
“Senator Murphy is drawing up a blueprint for winning the battle against climate change. That fight will establish American global leadership and create millions of jobs,” said Reed Hundt, CEO of the Coalition for Green Capital.
Connecticut Green Bank was the first green bank in the country. Since it was founded in 2011, the Connecticut Green Bank has leveraged more than $1 billion in clean energy investments, created the equivalent of more than 12,000 jobs, and reduced approximately 1.4 million tons of CO2 emissions over the lifetime of its financed projects. The success of the Connecticut Green Bank has inspired the creation of similar green banks across the country.
Full text of the bill can be viewed here.