Youngkin unveils energy plan during visit to Lynchburg

Published: Oct. 3, 2022 at 8:36 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin rolled out his energy plan Monday morning, touting an “all-of-the-above” approach that includes fossil fuels, renewables and a major nod to nuclear power.

Youngkin unveiled his proposal during an event in Lynchburg at Delta Star Incorporated, a company that manufactures transformers and other electrical equipment.

“We need an achievable and dynamic energy plan that provides for abundant, reliable, affordable and clean energy,” Youngkin said. “And the way we are going to accomplish this is with an all-of-the-above approach, all of the above.”

Speaking to a room full of supporters and Delta Star employees, Youngkin said the state must rely on a diverse portfolio of energy sources, including fossil fuels, nuclear power and renewables such as wind and solar.

“We absolutely must reject, we must reject the false choice between reliable and affordable energy and clean energy,” he said. “It is a false choice.”

Youngkin also said Virginia should be “all in” on nuclear power, to build the world’s leading nuclear energy hub, and achieve what he described as a “moonshot” for southwest Virginia.

“Virginia will launch a commercial small modular reactor that will be serving customers with baseload power demand in southwest Virginia within the next ten years,” Youngkin said. “That’s what we’re going to go do.”

The Virginia League of Conservation Voters released a statement describing the governor’s plan as a “thinly veiled attempt to obstruct Virginia’s transition to a clean energy economy.”

Following is the full text of the statement from Executive Director Michael Town.

“In his legislatively mandated roadmap to what is supposed to be our clean energy future, Governor Youngkin has instead given up by generating a plan with big handouts to the fossil fuel industry and that does little to accomplish even his own stated goals. This “all-of-the-above” energy plan is really just a thinly veiled attempt to obstruct our transition to a clean energy economy and roll back the climate action policies that are securing cleaner air for Virginia while creating jobs and investment in our state. We firmly oppose any weakening or wholesale repeal efforts targeting the clean energy and climate action policies we fought so hard to secure, and we will work with our champions in the Senate to block this Administration every step of the way as they work to undermine our progress.”

Youngkin will need support among Senate Democrats to succeed in modifying the clean energy legislation that was approved during the Northam administration.