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South Carolina governor issues order to establish plans for state’s energy future

Christina Lee Knauss //June 12, 2023//

South Carolina governor issues order to establish plans for state’s energy future

Christina Lee Knauss //June 12, 2023//

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South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster has issued an executive order that establishes a working group to ensure the state has the energy capacity needed for the future.

Gov. McMaster issued the order Friday, June 9, during a statewide energy summit held at the University of South Carolina Alumni Center.

McMaster’s order establishes the PowerSC Energy Resources and Economic Development Interagency Working Group, which will be known as PowerSC.

The group will work energy stakeholders around the state to develop strategic plans to build energy capacity to meet both the state’s economic growth and the rapidly growing population, according to state officials. 

"South Carolina has enjoyed unprecedented economic success and population growth in recent years, and with that success comes a need for greater energy generation," McMaster said. "By establishing PowerSC, we ensure that South Carolina can meet these increased energy demands while also keeping energy costs low for consumers and ratepayers." 

PowerSC will play a critical role in various aspects of the state's energy future by assisting with developing an updated state energy plan with the Office of Regulatory Staff, according to a news release. The group will also work to build coordination between the state’s utility providers and assess opportunities to incorporate additional nuclear power production and natural gas pipeline or generation capacity.  

Other goals include improving the state’s licensing and permitting processes related to energy infrastructure, evaluating building codes to enhance energy efficiency and working with industry stakeholders, education providers and other state agencies to evaluate supply gaps in the state’s energy workforce.

PowerSC will involve the governor’s office; the Office of Regulatory Staff including the Energy Office; the Environmental Affairs Administration of the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control; the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources’ division of land, water and conservation; South Carolina Department of Transportation, South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce; South Carolina Office of Resilience and the South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation.

This executive order works hand-in-hand with another issued in October 2022 which formalized the governor’s efforts to coordinate the future roll-out of the state’s electric vehicle infrastructure and created an interagency working group tasked with developing a comprehensive plan regarding the strategic deployment of electric vehicle-related resources and infrastructure across the state.