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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Clean Energy Standard

President Barack Obama is promoting a Clean Erengy Standard (CES) that sets a goal of deriving 80% of the nation’s overall electricity generation from “clean energy” sources by 2035. On March 30, 2011 the President introduced an additional energy goal for the nation – a reduction of oil imports by one third within 10 years.

Introduction of Congressional legislation is pending.

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and Ranking Member Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) released a white paper on March 21 requesting broad public comment on the idea of developing such a standard. The paper poses 36 crucial questions that may ultimately decide the success or failure of CES legislation, including:

■ What energy sources should qualify as “clean”

■ What is the most appropriate timetable for implementing a standard

■ How would consumers be protected from burdensome rate increases

■ How much new transmission is needed to meet clean energy goals

■ How should transmission costs be allocated

■ What effect might s CES have on “current dispatch order of existing generation…which has been driven by minimization of consumer costs, historically.” (ISO Newswire, 4/11/2011)

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