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PA Governor Rendell's Clean Energy Initiatives Gain ing New International Attention; Governor's Energy Initiatives Featured at Wind Conference in Germany

25 May 2006

HARRISBURG, Pa., May 25 /PRNewswire/ -- For the fourth time in less than a year, Pennsylvania Governor Edward G. Rendell's clean energy efforts are drawing international attention.

"Our commonwealth offers a vivid illustration of the tremendous economic and environmental benefits that can be realized when we refocus our priorities on clean, advanced, indigenous energy resources," Governor Rendell said.

"Pennsylvania is taking the lead as an innovator in helping to build and deploy a diverse array of alternative energy projects."

The Governor's energy initiatives were featured across Europe last week during the WindEnergy 2006 conference in Hamburg, Germany. Environmental Protection Secretary Kathleen McGinty represented Governor Rendell at the international trade show for wind energy manufacturers, developers and financiers.

Pennsylvania was the only state in the United States afforded a keynote speaking opportunity at the plenary session. All other speakers were European.

"We are making clean energy history in Pennsylvania -- and the international community is taking notice," McGinty said. "This international podium gave us an important opportunity to attract still more foreign investment and energy job creation to Pennsylvania. We now have a growing array of manufacturers and investors looking to set up business in our state."

Thousands of companies, individuals, investors and energy associations participated in the event, which featured exhibitors from 26 countries, including the United Kingdom, Denmark, France, Spain and Sweden, among just a few. The trade fair examined the international wind energy market, including project financing, grid expansion and market development.

Total installed wind power worldwide is about 60,000 megawatts. That amount is expected to grow to 210,000 megawatts in 2014 as key future markets in Germany, France, Spain and the United States come online.

Pennsylvania is a key American market. There are more than 5,000 megawatts of untapped wind power in the state, with the potential to generate 45 billion kilowatt-hours annually, or enough to power more than 5 million homes. The commonwealth also is central to growing solar and biofuel sectors.

Pennsylvania's clean energy law mandates some 700 megawatts of electricity from solar photovoltaics by 2020, the second largest solar requirement in the country. Within the year, the state also could be the nation's leading producer of biodiesel with a projected 40 million gallons of annual production.

The growth potential of these sources, combined with Governor Rendell's strategic investments in cutting-edge projects, has put Pennsylvania at the forefront of alternative energy development. It also has opened the door for potential European investments in the state.

The Financial Times Deutschland, one of Germany's premier business dailies, recently published a piece detailing the policies and incentives that Governor Rendell has put in place to give alternative energy investors the assurances they need to do business in Pennsylvania.

That story was derived from an earlier visit to Hamburg by Rendell administration officials who outlined the Governor's energy policies at a conference, "Successful in the USA: A Seminar for German Companies," and a subsequent visit by German journalists who took a five-day tour of advanced energy projects in Pennsylvania.

Wind energy is a key part of Governor Rendell's strategy to build a diversified energy base that ensures greater security for Pennsylvania, creates jobs and improves the environment.

Pennsylvania's Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard, one of the most progressive in the nation, ensures that 18 percent of all retail energy generated by 2020 comes from clean, efficient and advanced resources. The clean energy builds substantially on the state's leadership in wind production east of the Mississippi, where the commonwealth provides enough clean energy to power some 70,000 homes.

Because of that leadership, Governor Rendell was able to lead a campaign to land the Spanish wind-energy company Gamesa Corp., the second largest wind energy company in the world, beating out many other vying states. With its U.S. headquarters in Philadelphia and manufacturing facilities in Bucks and Cambria counties, Gamesa represents an $84 million investment in the state that will create as many as 1,000 jobs over five years.

... The Rendell Administration is committed to creating a first-rate public education system, protecting our most vulnerable citizens and continuing economic investment to support our communities and businesses. To find out more about Governor Rendell's initiatives and to sign up for his weekly newsletter, visit his Web site at: http://www.governor.state.pa.us/ .

CONTACT: Kate Philips, Pennsylvania Office of the Governor, +1-717-783-1116; or Kurt Knaus, DEP, +1-717-787-1323. Pennsylvania Office of the Governor. Web site: www.depweb.state.pa.us/http://www.governor.state.pa.us/

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