Here Is to Four More Years of Progress in Renewable Energy

By Erin Voegele | November 08, 2012

The election is finally over, with Obama chosen to serve a second term as President.

Whether you agree with the results of this election on a personal level or not, I think it’s clear that Obama’s victory is a victory for the renewable energy sector. While Romney did voice his support for a couple of renewable energy initiatives, including the renewable fuel standard (RFS), he is a stanch supporter of the fossil fuel industry. Regarding energy, his administration’s primary goal would not have been furthering growth of the renewable energy and biofuels sectors. The primary goal would have been more drilling, more fracking and more mining.

While the Obama administration has done a great job in the realm of renewable energy so far, I hope to see even more in his second term.

In my opinion, one of the most exciting aspects of a president’s second term is that they know from the start there won’t be a third. During the first term, there are surely thoughts of how decisions and policy objectives might impact the campaign for the second term. Obama is now free of those concerns.

I’m not sure exactly what the next four years will bring. Different political analysts have pointed to the possibility of a carbon tax, or policy framework around climate change, both of which could be positive for the renewable energy industry (if crafted the right way).

I could list off the dozens of specific things I hope to see happen during the next presidential term, including the establishment of long-term tax incentives for the biomass industry, the expansion of programs, such as BCAP, that have already been proven successful, and more support for advanced biofuels and biochemicals and biobased power.

I think the next four years will hold a lot of potential.

However, there is still a lot that can be done before the official start of the next presidential term—and before the new crop of Senators and Congressmen take office. Hopefully we’ll see some movement on the Farm Bill during the upcoming lame duck session.