Thursday, February 08, 2007

EEI Voting on Greenhouse Gas Legislation Position

From Bloomberg:

U.S. utility chief executive officers are voting today on a statement that would express support for federal legislation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The statement was drafted by the Edison Electric Institute, the Washington trade association for investor-owned utilities, which will collect the votes via conference call. The group's members are the largest U.S. utility owners, including Southern Co., American Electric Power Co. and Exelon Corp.

``EEI supports federal action or legislation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,'' according to the draft set of principles the utility chiefs will consider, which was obtained by Bloomberg News. The draft also says members ``clearly recognize the growing concerns regarding the threat of climate change.''

Momentum is growing in Congress to tackle global warming with mandatory limits on emissions of carbon dioxide and other so-called greenhouse gases. A United Nations panel last week reported that it is more than 90 percent certain that the Earth is warming because of the carbon released by burning fossil fuels. The Bush administration said that the causes of global warming are ``no longer up for debate.''

``Having EEI decide to participate in this process is a major step forward,'' Representative Rick Boucher, a Virginia Democrat and the chairman of a House subcommittee on air quality, said yesterday in a telephone interview. ``It is very meaningful for industry to have decided that the time has come to work with members of Congress to draft legislation.''


Anonymous said...

It makes sense that utilities are increasingly supporting carbon controls, because the current uncertainty is making it very difficult to move forward with investment decisions for needed new base load capacity. This has major implications for nuclear--in December 2006 the Energy Information Agency published a study showing that with carbon controls their predictions for new nuclear construction go from 9 GW by 2030 for their "reference" case assumptions for construction costs, to 47 GW by 2030. Let's commend the utilities for doing the right thing here.

Starvid, Sweden said...

The easiest and cheapest, free really, way to deal with climate change is just banning new construction of coal, oil and gas fired facilites while granting wind, nuclear and pumped hydro state loan guarantees.

Exceptions will be made for reserve power and gas in those places where there is no other alternative for load balancing.