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Copper: The Preferred Alloy for Sustainable Energy Technologies (Part I)

By Zolaikha Strong, Director of the Copper Development Association (CDA) Sustainable Energy Program

2013 has been a good year to talk about copper use in sustainable energy. The CDA has led a strong Congressional campaign from 2012 to date with more than 60 meetings on Capitol Hill to educate legislators, regulators, Congressional staffers and other groups on both federal and state levels about copper’s unique attributes, making it the preferred alloy for sustainable energy technologies.

We’ve entered into partnerships with key organizations and coalitions, such as the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, the Alliance to Save Energy, the Electricity Storage Association, the Edison Electric Institute and many others in our work to support energy efficiency legislation. We’ve had two goals:

  • To increase awareness of the value of copper, particularly in the sustainable energy arena, to key legislators and regulatory groups.
  • To encourage industries to use products with high copper content, such as copper rotor motors. These products are ideal for industry because they will comply with high-efficiency standards mandated by legislation.

Sources for renewable energy

Energy-Efficiency Legislation – What’s New

We’ve been working with Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) for more than a year in support of their bipartisan energy bill, called the Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act. Last May, the Senate Energy Committee approved a new version of the bill (S.761) and a companion bill was introduced in the House of Representatives (H.R. 1616).

The Shaheen-Portman energy-efficiency bill is the one most likely to be able to be passed by both the House and Senate. The Senate will vote on the bill this month.

The CDA also supports The Storage Technology for Renewable and Green Energy Act (H.R. 1465), proposed legislation that would create a tax credit for energy storage. This bill is currently in committee. If passed, it would promote the kind of incentive program that has been very beneficial for other renewable energy sources, such as wind power.

Copper is clearly the winner when it comes to reliability, efficiency and conductivity. For more information on the CDA’s commitment to sustainable energy, check out our website, or email me, zolaikha.strong@copperalliance.us.

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