Indiana Advanced Energy Economy Opposes SB 472 as Amended
Bill now includes moratorium on energy development designed to protect coal interests at the expense of Indiana consumers and businesses
INDIANAPOLIS, April 8, 2019 — Indiana Advanced Energy Economy (Indiana AEE) released the following statement today in opposition to SB 472, which was amended last week to include a 20-month moratorium on utility regulatory commission action on any matter involving more than 250 MW of generating capacity at a time when utilities are considering retiring coal-fired units and replacing them with cleaner, cheaper energy sources:
"Simply put, this bill, as amended, has something for everyone not to like,” said Caryl Auslander, Director with Indiana Advanced Energy Economy. “If you're a believer in the power of free markets, this bill would insert government squarely into the middle of investment decisions rightly made by the utilities with scrutiny by the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission. If you care about keeping energy bills down, this bill would impose higher energy costs on consumers by keeping more expensive power plants online. Finally, if you think Indiana should gain the savings, jobs, and other economic benefits that come with investment in newer, cleaner, cheaper energy sources, this bill would simply extend the lives of outmoded power plants for the benefit of their fuel suppliers. Offered in committee with no public debate, this is a backroom deal to protect old energy interests at the expense of consumers, who will face higher costs for no benefit.”
Indiana has long enjoyed low energy costs as a competitive advantage, but electricity rates have been rising steadily for the past 15 years, undermining that competitiveness. Utilities like the Northern Indiana Public Service Co. are demonstrating that investment in advanced energy technologies like wind, solar, storage, and demand response benefit consumers to the tune of $4 billion. This bill threatens to stop progress toward realizing those benefits by calling a halt on investment to modernize the Indiana electric power system. Proponents of this bill are invoking a threat to electric reliability that does not exist as cover for serving the interests of coal suppliers over Indiana consumers.
“This bill would insert the government into the market, increase energy costs for Indiana homes and businesses, and stand in the way of cleaner, cheaper energy resources for Indiana,” said Auslander. “We urge the legislature to support the Indiana economy, households, and businesses by rejecting this bill.”
About AEE and Indiana AEE:
Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) is a national association of businesses that are making the energy we use secure, clean, and affordable. Advanced energy encompasses a broad range of products and services that constitute the best available technologies for meeting energy needs today and tomorrow. AEE’s mission is to transform public policy to enable rapid growth of advanced energy businesses. Engaged at the federal level and in more than a dozen states around the country, including Indiana, AEE represents more than 100 companies in the $200 billion U.S. advanced energy industry, which employs 3.5 million U.S. workers. Learn more at www.aee.net, track the latest news @AEEnet.
Contact: Caryl Auslander, firstname.lastname@example.org or 317-316-2895