Editorial roundup: the battle to protect electric customers in Springfield

Springfield is abuzz with two very different pieces of energy legislation, one that could help electric customers and another that could hurt them.

One is  the Illinois Clean Jobs bill (House Bill 2607/Senate Bill 1485), which would increase energy efficiency and renewable energy standards in Illinois.  A CUB analysis found that the bill would save consumers $1.6 billion— an average consumer savings of $98 per year— and create 32,000 jobs per year, once it’s fully implemented.

(Tell legislators you support the Illinois Clean Jobs bill.)

The other legislation, the “Exelon bill” (SB 1585 and HB 3293), would cost ratepayers an estimated  $300 million per year to prop up three of the power giant’s nuclear plants in Illinois—despite the fact that Exelon earned a cool $1.6 billion last year.

(Tell legislators you’re against the Exelon bill.)

We’ve rounded up Illinois’ best opinion pieces in favor of the Illinois Clean Jobs bill and against the Exelon bill.

Illinois Clean Jobs Bill

Exelon bill

We’ll refresh this blog post with the latest developments, so check back for updates.

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2 Responses to Editorial roundup: the battle to protect electric customers in Springfield

  1. A frugal environmentalist says:

    There are a couple of things everyone should know about the Clean Jobs Bill.

    1. The bill (Illinois SB 1485) leaves intact language that says(page 2, lines 3 and 4) “and to support development of clean coal technologies and renewable resources” and (page 2, lines 19 through 23) “The State should encourage the use of advanced clean coal technologies that capture and sequester carbon dioxide emissions to advance environmental protection goals and to demonstrate the viability of coal and coal-derived fuels in a carbon-constrained economy.”

    Considering that the bill’s authors knew this language is in the original renewable portfolio standard and they did nothing to remove the language, the bill’s authors, and all those NGO’s that are supporting the bill, are in effect endorsing clean coal. The Sierra Club, CUB, NRDC, Faith In Place have said nothing about this issue. The Sen. David Koehler amendment takes it further in adding the following language: “Amending or establishing tax policies or incentives to support clean coal technologies.” Last time I checked the state was having budget problems. And, instead of raising electric rates, our tax rates would be increased. Why have you not brought up this issue?
    2. The Koehler amendment raises more concerns in that he seems to want to convert all the coal burning plants into biomass burning plants. Although he is not specific (though he does mention forests), this would include forests, trash, ethanol, corn, switch grass – anything that can be grown. However, there is no accounting for all the petroleum products used to grow the corn or switch grass, etc. I assume it would all be considered a 100% renewable resource and therefore carbon free. Now, last time I check, no environmentalists were in favor of cutting down forests to fuel coal plants so that those dinosaurs stay in business. Why has the red flag not been raised by CUB or The Sierra Club, NRDC or the others?
    3. The bill was written so that the rules only apply to existing power plants and was written before the final rules came out in early August. As such, the authors of the bill intended the CO2 rules to apply to only existing power plants. So, they thought, they could just close a few coal plants to get into compliance and then build all the other new gas and coal burning plants they want – because they would never be counted. Turns out the EPA caught on to these shenanigans and changed the rules so that the plants replacing existing plants had to be counted. Aren’t we all sick of this kind of bait and switch deception? Where is Cub on the issue?
    4. The bill does not need to be passed. If Illinois does nothing the EPA will come up with a workable plan without all the giveaways to the coal and gas industries. That seems like a better solution: Do not pass the Illinois Clean Jobs Bill”

  2. Pingback: Historic Moment: EPA unveils Clean Power Plan |

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