Friday, June 15, 2007

Lost in Space: Warning Will Robinson, Energy Legislation

We agree with energy legislation to increase fuel economy standards to 35 miles per gallon for cars from the current requirement of 27.5.

Proposals to burden utility companies with a requirement to get 20 percent of electricity from renewable sources is a prescription for disaster. All wind and solar sources will have to be backed up by conventional sources. So ratepayers will get less for more money. Ratepayers are already suffering from rate shock from the adjustments now being made from deregulation that was botched by government meddling.

We disagree with banning new coal-fired power plants unless they capture and sequester their carbon dioxide emissions. We should not legislate such a requirement until infrastructure is in place by the nation to deal with the carbon dioxide problem. This includes a nationwide carbon dioxide pipeline system that will transport the gas to subterranean locations. Utilities and ratepayers should also be protected from unforeseen consequences of sequestering carbon dioxide. Placing unreasonable reqirements that utilities cannot meet will lead to litigation and not greenhouse gas reductions.

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