Cambridge director appointed to Md. thermal energy task force
Dion Banks, director of governmental affairs for Cambridge International, is among a group of individuals appointed by Governor O’Malley to the Maryland Thermal Renewable Energy Credit Task Force in support for Senate Bill 797. The bill, first introduced in February 2013, would expand the renewable energy portfolio to award credits for the use of thermal biomass energy, generating electricity through combined-heat-and-power (CHP) technologies, resulting in reduced operational costs for businesses. The task force will be essential in progressing toward the ultimate goal to improve Maryland’s energy landscape.
In March, Banks testified to the Maryland Senate Finance Committee on the benefits of the Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard regarding wood- and plant-derived biomass systems. According to Banks, by expanding the portfolio to include these alternative energy technologies, the state could gain valuable employment opportunities in a range of areas, as well as becoming a hub for deployment all along the Atlantic.
While serving on the Maryland Thermal Renewable Energy Credit Task Force, Banks plans to capitalize on the role Cambridge can play in helping Maryland reach renewable energy goals. “As a part of Maryland’s growing business base in the renewable energy sector,” Banks said, “we urge the state to continue to take a leadership role in the development of the renewable energy market.”
Since entering the new clean energy economy in 2009, Cambridge International has launched a new division, Cambridge EnTech, which provides proven clean energy solutions and addresses environmental problems. Banks would like to tap into Cambridge EnTech’s resources and expertise in construction, installation and support of full scale biomass gasification plants to bring new capabilities to the region.
“Ultimately, Maryland is well poised to improve its energy landscape by putting to use the abundance of wood resources that are currently produced but not utilized,” Banks said, “and in doing so would capture the long-term benefits of cheaper energy while keeping fuel expenditures local, creating jobs, and improving our forested environment.”