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GREEN JOBS PROPOSED FOR NEVADAAfter a week of sparring over the budget, Republican Gov. Jim Gibbons and

Democrats running the Legislature ended up agreeing -- more or less -- on

at least one thing: the need for "green jobs" and renewable energy

infrastructure in Nevada.Senate Majority Leader Steven Horsford, D-North Las Vegas, said in a speech

Thursday a key initiative for Democrats during the 2009 session will be

creation of 15,000 "green collar" jobs to retrofit schools and homes with

energy-saving measures."We must look to Nevada's considerable renewable energy to create short-

and long-term jobs as we work towards a clean energy economy in our state,"

Horsford said.Gibbons followed up with a press release stating that Nevada is well on its

way to developing the infrastructure, public-private partnerships, and

private investment it would need for such an effort."As I said in my State of the State address, I hope for bipartisan support

for our plan to expand our renewable energy industry, and I am glad to see

that Democratic leadership is on board with our vision," Gibbons said.Horsford said he'd like to see federal money used to create "centers for

renewable and sustainable energy" to train workers to conduct energy

audits, weatherize homes and retrofit schools and other public buildings

with energy-efficient measures. He forsees job-training centers in Reno,

Las Vegas and rural Nevada.Gibbons has said he plans to expand the renewable energy industry in

Nevada, and the state's abundant sunshine, wind and hot springs make it an

ideal location for solar, wind and geothermal power production.But Nevada's power grid in the south, centered around Las Vegas, is not

connected to its power grid in the north, around Reno, which has stalled

renewable energy development.In order for new power sources to reach the entire state, transmission

lines would have to be built between the northern and southern population

centers.Dan Burns, spokesman for Gibbons, said the governor has met with

representatives of companies that are interested in building transmission

lines to connect the two power grids."The governor is intensely interested in a renewable energy future for

Nevada," Burns said. "This is an industry that would come here, and create

thousands of jobs, that would stay in this state for the long term. This

country will always need energy."LS Power of East Brunswick, N.J., already has been approved to build a

transmission line on the east side of Nevada linking Las Vegas with

transmission lines near Ely that run to Reno. LS Power hasn't said whether

it can sell enough transmission capacity to make the line feasible.Vulcan Power Co. of Bend, Ore., wants to build a second line on the west

side of Nevada. The 347-mile, 500-kilovolt transmission line would run from

Yerington in the north to Jean in the south, giving Las Vegas and Southern

California access to geothermal power resources in northern Nevada.Also, Nevada-based NV Energy continues to plan its own transmission lines

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