Senate approves two measures to expand carbon-free power and ene - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Senate approves two measures to expand carbon-free power and energy technologies

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OLYMPIA, WA - Today, the Senate approved two measures from Washington Senator Sharon Brown. They both aim towards encouraging and expanding the use of carbon-free power and energy technologies.

We spoke with Senator Brown on the phone earlier today to find out what her goals are for these two measures.

Bill 5475 will provide a business and occupation tax incentive for the production of small modular reactors, which is a small nuclear reactor. There's a few different types of technologies for these, including one where you ramp up the generation as needed, which she calls an exciting technology.

"It's about energy and it's about Washington state being a leader in energy and being a leader in clean energy strategies for our future," said Senator Brown.

The second measure that passed today is Bill 5232, which would allow incremental electricity produced as a result of efficiency improvements to hydropower plants, to qualify as a renewable source, under the state's Energy Independence Act. Senator Brown says it won't only save consumers money, but it will also provide more employment opportunities.

Senator Brown says becoming a leader in clean energy technology would offer tremendous economic development gains for Washington state.

Next, the bills have to go to the House, which she says she expects to be met with some resistance.