Governor Ernie Fletcher’s Communications Office
Governor Fletcher Announces Office of Energy Policy's Move to the Governor's Office

Press Release Date:  Friday, October 20, 2006  
Contact Information:  Jodi Whitaker
502-564-2611
 


Move demonstrates the importance of Kentucky’s energy issues to Fletcher administration

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Governor Ernie Fletcher today announced that the Office of Energy Policy has been moved to the Governor’s office and will now be called the Governor’s Office of Energy Policy. The reorganization will allow the office, which was previously part of the Commerce Cabinet, to work more closely with the Governor and his staff to implement and promote the Governor’s vision of energy policy in the commonwealth. The announcement was made at the 2006 Kentucky Energy Summit, held today in Louisville

“With its coalfields, Kentucky has long been a supplier of energy in the form of coal, natural gas and oil,” said Governor Fletcher. “While this has been beneficial to many in the coalfields regions, we should begin to look at Kentucky’s energy future. We need to look at how to use our resources wisely and in environmentally-safe ways, how to create value-added, energy-related industries in Kentucky, and how to help our nation reduce its dependence on unstable, foreign sources of energy.

“Moving the Office of Energy Policy to my office is just one way I can demonstrate how important Kentucky’s energy issues are to my administration,” Governor Fletcher said.

Dr. Talina R. Matthews will continue to serve as executive director of the Governor’s Office of Energy Policy. Prior to coming to the Office of Energy Policy in August, Mathews worked for the Kentucky Public Service Commission and the Department for Environmental Protection.  Mathews received her Ph.D. and Master of Arts in economics from the University of Kentucky.  She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in mathematics and economics from Berea College.

In 2005, Governor Fletcher initiated Kentucky’s first comprehensive energy strategy making 54 recommendations to guide state government in using Kentucky’s resources in sustainable ways and at the same time, helping grow our economy and retaining our solid position in the energy sector.

Governor Fletcher also announced two additional energy initiatives earlier this month at the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) conference in Pikeville. The first, a Clean Coal Conference to be held in 2007 in an ARC state focusing on clean coal technologies and the role of the Appalachian states in utilizing that technology for future energy production.   The second, an executive order calling for the following:

  • The Finance and Administration Cabinet shall improve the fuel efficiency of Kentucky’s transportation fleet by rightsizing and procuring more fuel-efficient and alternative-use replacement vehicles. 
  • The Office of Energy Policy shall commit $1,000,000 during this biennium to the research, development, deployment and commercialization of renewable energy and energy efficient projects.  This shall include a study of the net benefits of incentives for consumers to purchase ENERGY STAR appliances.
  • The Office of Energy Policy shall produce a study analyzing the impact of incorporating energy efficiency as a goal of retail rate design. Because of our low cost of electricity, incentives may not exist to increase efficiency to either the utilities or consumers. 
  • The Office of Energy Policy shall continue to implement and support education programs for energy efficiency to reduce energy use and to reduce utility bills for the citizens of the Commonwealth.

The Governor’s Office of Energy Policy’s Energy Summit focused on ways to enhance economic development in the Commonwealth by industrializing Kentucky’s energy resources, including coal and biomass. In addition to Governor Fletcher, speakers included Sen. Jim Bunning and other high-ranking industry, government, academic and trade association members.

For more information on the Governor’s Office of Energy Policy visit http://energy.ky.gov.


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