(The Center Square) - The Colorado Senate passed a bill on Monday that would require the state to "encourage" the development of geothermal energy sources.
Senate Bill 22-118 would require the Colorado Energy Office to increase consumer education about geothermal energy and specify that the energy source is "a type of pollution control equipment."
The bill, sponsored by Sens. Rob Woodward, R-Loveland, and Nick Hinrichsen, R-Pueblo, and Reps. Donald Valdez, D-La Jara, and Richard Holtorf, R-Akron, now heads to the House of Representatives for further consideration.
"Amidst this energy crisis we find ourselves in, it's a relief to see a bill like this progress," Woodward said in a statement. "Part of our Commitment to Colorado seeks to make this state more affordable and preserve our environment."
Colorado Republicans have introduced several bills during the 2022 legislative session seeking to address the state's rising energy costs. One bill would have required the state to study the use of small nuclear reactors, while another bill would have prohibited local authorities from limiting the use of natural gas in homes. Both bills were postponed indefinitely in committees.
Woodward said clean geothermal energy would help lower energy costs in the state.
"When this bill is passed, the adoption of clean and reliable geothermal energy will drive down the cost of energy for Coloradans with minimal impact on our environment," the senator said.