2021 State Energy Strategy

Washington is developing the 2021 State Energy Strategy to support the state’s ambitious goals to protect our climate, safeguard consumers, and promote a green economy. The call for an updated state energy strategy is part of Washington’s landmark 2019 legislation establishing a new clean electricity standard for Washington, the Clean Energy Transformation Act of 2019 (SB 5116).

The Legislature’s 2019 amendments focus the review and update of the state energy strategy on recommendations to align the state’s policies and actions with

  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions to meet the targets recommended by the Department of Ecology, and
  • Transforming the electricity sector to meet the state’s 100% clean standard.

While the policies and actions will be directed at achieving these goals, the underlying baseline principles used to develop the recommendations in the strategy will be

  • Maintaining reasonable and fair prices and sufficient supply of energy, 
  • Promoting a competitive clean energy economy and workforce development across the state, 
  • Meeting the needs of low-income and vulnerable populations,
  • Reaching and responding to the needs of both urban and rural communities, and
  • Pursuing cost-effective energy efficiency and conservation measures.

It is expected that the recommended policies and actions in the 2021 state energy strategy will fall into categories of emphasis, which could include

  • Identifying and supporting clean energy practices in business, industry and agriculture,
  • Reducing the energy use and carbon emissions of new and existing buildings,
  • Improving and modernizing the state’s energy supply, structure, systems and grid and,
  • Increasing the use of clean energy for transportation.

The policies and actions laid out in the 2021 State Energy Strategy and implemented to meet the state’s climate goals will vary from sector to sector, but will often present cross-sector opportunities and benefits. Renewable and non-emitting electricity will provide the foundation as the state rapidly transitions away from coal, natural gas, and petroleum in major sectors of the economy. The consistent outcome will be that Washington’s businesses and workforce thrive while the state dramatically reduces overall emissions of greenhouse gases. A just transition will ensure an equitable distribution of the costs and benefits of the clean energy economy.

The 2019 legislation directs the Department of Commerce to review and update the state’s energy strategy by the end of 2020. Among other things, the updated state energy strategy may inform legislative proposals for the 2021 session of the Legislature.

Washington’s state energy strategy was last updated in 2012. The Department of Commerce issued a biennial energy report in 2019 that includes an update on recommendations made in the 2012 strategy.

Commerce is developing the 2021 State Energy Strategy collaboratively with stakeholders and members of the public. The Legislature established an advisory committee for the development of the strategy. The committee is made up of legislators, government officials, and representatives of civic organizations, energy and utility businesses, and public interest advocates. Commerce will also use technical advisory groups to assist in the development of the strategy.

Opportunities for public involvement will be provided throughout the development of the 2021 state energy strategy. The advisory committee, and technical advisory groups, will meet multiple times during 2020. Meetings will be open to the public and will be accessible remotely. Also, a public hearing will be held before the submission of the final report.

Please register to receive email updates and meeting notices.

Upcoming Meetings

Advisory Committee Meeting, June 11, 2020

  • For more details, check back soon and sign up for email updates.

Past Meetings

Advisory Committee Meeting, March 31, 2020
Meeting materials

January 10, 2020, Advisory Committee Kickoff Meeting
Meeting Materials


Advisory Committee


Clean Energy Resources

Need Help?

Kate Kelly
Senior Energy Policy Specialist
Energy Division
Phone: (360) 628-6846

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