NextGen Climate President: Presidential Candidates Must Support Clean Energy

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ANKENY, Iowa - One of the top clean energy advocates in the country told a crowd in Ankeny at DMACC's Campus Energy Center he'd like every presidential candidate to support an initiative to convert the U.S. into at least a 50 percent clean energy economy by 2030.

NextGen Climate founder and president, Tom Steyer, led a roundtable discussion at DMACC Tuesday morning where he discussed the emergence of clean energy as an affordable, competitive resource compared to coal and natural gas. Steyer said he wants all presidential candidates - on both sides of the aisle - to release detailed plans for how to convert the U.S. into a clean energy economy. Steyer supports an initiative to see the country at 50% clean energy by 2030.

Representatives from Hy-Vee and DMACC also participated in the discussion and pointed at ways Iowa is gearing up for an emergence in solar and wind energy. Hy-Vee says it has 32 stores with electric car charging stations for customers, and DMACC is currently expanding its clean energy program to prepare students for specific tracks in the industry.

Toward the end of the discussion, Steyer told the crowd big-name companies are looking to expand in states where clean energy is a priority - like Iowa.

"Apple, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, these companies aren't going to states that don't show a commitment to clean energy," he said. "Because they're built around a culture and a commitment of supporting clean energy."