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HB 6 bailout would set us back from GHG emissions goals

• Updated Jul 10, 2019 at 9:09 AM

NOTE: The following letter to the editor was submitted by Tim Adam of Wakeman.

The Green New Deal draws from our best scientific reports to set goals for avoiding the worst effects of climate change.

Those goals are to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 50 percent from 2010 levels by 2030 and to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.

Ohio needs a comprehensive energy plan for reaching those goals. Instead, the General Assembly is considering House Bill 6, the FirstEnergy nuke plant bailout bill.

The bailout provision of HB 6 would have rate-payers fork over $150 million a year to FirstEnergy in return for the company keeping its two dangerous, but GHG-free nuclear generating plants open. While we might want to keep those plants running until we can replace that GHG-free power, is the bailout, which FirstEnergy spent millions lobbying for, really the best way of doing it? And might we be further ahead putting that kind of money toward upgrades and deployment of wind, solar, battery storage and the power grid?

Beyond the bailout, HB 6 would set us back from our GHG emissions goals. One provision would kill renewable energy standards. Another would weaken energy efficiency standards. Yet another would actually allow more rate-payer subsidies to two coal plants, one of which is in Indiana.

Where do Huron County's members of the General Assembly stand on HB 6? Rep. Dick Stein co-sponsored and voted for an even-worse version of HB 6, which passed the Ohio House. The bill is now in the Senate, where Sen. Nathan Manning has a chance to help kill this bill.

Then the General Assembly should get to work on a comprehensive energy plan for Ohio to reach GHG emissions goals and do its part to save us from the worst effects of climate change.

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