Letter: More money needed in ND for energy conservation
Since 2009, when organizations like the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy began scoring states for energy efficiency, North Dakota has consistently been ranked at the bottom for energy efficiency.
Since the early 1980s North Dakota has had a policy in place to promote energy conservation, yet not a single dollar has been used for energy conservation.
To give a little background, the policy that I previously referenced is The Resources Trust Fund (RTF), which was created through passage of an initiated measure in 1980. At that time, the RTF received 10 percent of the 6.5 percent oil extraction tax.
In the 1990 primary election, North Dakota voters approved the RTF as a constitutional trust fund with the provision that the fund could be appropriated by the Legislature for two purposes: Constructing water-related projects, including rural water systems, and funding energy conservation.
Since 1990, all of the money from the RTF has been appropriated for the construction of water-related projects.
I admit that water projects are important in North Dakota, yet to ignore the need to conserve energy in a state ranked as one of the worst in energy efficiency is a failure of leadership, as well as a failure to adhere to the historically conservative values of North Dakota.
It is about time our leaders step up and appropriate money for energy conservation programs that save North Dakotans money on their energy bills.
Terrence Kardong, Dakota Resource Council member, Richardton