U.S. SENATE—U.S. Senator Martha McSally (R-AZ) today asked energy secretary nominee Dan Brouillette to partner with Arizona universities.
During a U.S. Committee on Energy and Natural Resources hearing to consider the nomination of Dan Brouillette to be Secretary of Energy, McSally highlighted Arizona’s leadership in solar technology.
“We’re now number 3 in solar [capacity] in Arizona, with the opportunity to grow, but we still need breakthrough technologies in storage because the sun doesn’t shine at night,” McSally said. “Arizona research institutions and companies are working really hard on research for this type of technology. I want to get your perspective on support from the department on working with universities and the private sector, specifically on the energy storage issue, because we’re going to hit a point where we can’t really go much further.”
Deputy Secretary of the Department of Energy Dan Brouillette said: “I agree with you Senator and look forward to working with you, should I be confirmed, and the good folks in Arizona to figure out some of these tough problems. We’re very interested in developing the talent we need to hire over the next few years.”
“One of the things I’d like to mention to you—I know it’s not in your state so I apologize for that, perhaps we can do one in Arizona as well—recently Dr. Martin Keller at the National Renewable Energy Department in Boulder, Colorado. He worked closely with the university there, the University of Colorado Boulder, to start a brand new graduate program that’s focused on renewable energy (and) that’s focused on the lab itself, so I’d like to explore opportunities like that as well so we can build this pipeline of talent coming into these areas.”
Brouilette accepted an invitation from McSally to visit Arizona and learn more about how Arizona’s universities can support the DOE’s initiatives focused on renewable energy.
On October 22, McSally introduced the Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act to streamline the permitting process for renewable energy development on public lands.
On July 8, McSally introduced the Joint Long-Term Storage Act, bipartisan legislation seeking to improve long-duration energy storage technology through strategic collaboration between federal agencies.