In this blog post, we examine the policies and positions of Representative Charlie Crist, Democratic candidate running for Governor in Florida. Also in this series, we profile Ron DeSantis, the incumbent Republican Governor in Florida running for re-election.Guest Blog | September 29, 2022 | Climate Change, Elections, Energy Policy, Florida
Brady Watson, former Civic Engagement Coordinator for the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, also contributed to this blog post.
This post is part of a series examining where 2022 candidates running for public offices in the Southeast stand on key energy and climate issues. Note: The Southern Alliance for Clean Energy does not support or oppose candidates or political parties. Links to reports, candidate websites, and outside sources are provided as citizen education tools.
In this blog post, we examine the policies and positions of Representative Charlie Crist Democratic nominee for Governor of Florida. Also in this series, we profile Ron DeSantis, the incumbent Republican Governor in Florida. Election Day is November 8, 2022, and also features an election for the U.S. Senate in the state of Florida between Democratic nominee Val Demings and the Republican incumbent Marco Rubio.
Representative Crist grew up in Florida’s “Sunshine City” in St. Petersburg. He played college football at Wake Forest University before transferring to Florida State University and receiving his undergraduate degree in 1978. He then earned his law degree from the Cumberland School of Law in Birmingham, Alabama. Crist has also served as a State Senator, Commissioner of Education, Attorney General, and Governor from 2007-2011, prior to serving in the U.S. House since 2017.
Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency
As governor, Crist signed an Executive Order in July of 2007 calling for a number of clean energy actions, including developing a rule to procure 20% of Florida’s power from clean renewable energy by 2020.
As a Member of Congress, Crist supported both the Inflation Reduction Act and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law which together include nearly $400 billion in clean energy and energy efficiency investments.
In the future, Crist has committed to a Million Solar Roofs plan, that includes:
- Protecting and Enhancing Solar Incentives
- Fighting Legislative Attacks on Net Metering
- Creating Solar Renewable Energy Credits
- Supporting and Expanding Low-Cost Financing Options for Homeowners and Small Business Owners
- Creating “Solar for All” Low-Income Grants
- Allowing Third-Party Ownership
- Streamlining Permitting and Interconnection Standards
- Instituting a Renewable Portfolio Standard and Efficiency Standards
- Installing Solar on State Buildings
As Republican Governor in 2006, Crist signed an executive order to develop a policy to reduce carbon emissions in the state by 80% by 2050, reduce carbon emissions associated with state operations, adopt California motor vehicle standards, and Establish a Climate and Energy Action Team to develop a state blueprint of climate strategies and actions.
Congressman Crist supported the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs act, and $29 million in funding from the law went to Florida to install electric vehicle charging stations.
Energy Equity and Energy Burden
In 2005, as Florida Attorney General, Crist opposed rate increases by the state’s biggest power companies. In 2009, as Republican governor, Crist stood up to the utilities on rate increases. Governor Crist’s Public Service Commission appointments required the state’s biggest power companies to significantly increase their energy efficiency goals. Utility-led energy efficiency investment helps lower bills for all customers and the programs are particularly important for energy-burdened families.
High-Risk Energy: Coal, Nuclear, Oil, Gas
As governor, Crist opposed coal plants and worked to steer the state in a new, cleaner direction.
The voter registration deadline for the Governor’s election in Florida is October 11, and early voting varies by location. Election Day for the 2022 midterms will be held on November 8, 2022. Find voting information in Florida.
Read the Where the Candidates Stand on Climate and Clean Energy Blog Series