This week Rhode Island’s dominant utility, National Grid, made its first-ever filing with the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) under Rhode Island’s newly enacted “revenue decoupling” statute. Grid’s filing resolves once and for all a debate that has been swirling around the environmental community in Rhode Island (and the rest of New England) for years – an argument over whether decoupling is a rip-off of utility rate-payers. CLF (and other environmental advocates) have argued for years that there are important environmental benefits to be reaped from decoupling. Opponents, including some ratepayer advocates, argued that decoupling would be bad for rate-payers because it would inevitably lead to unjustified rate hikes.
This week the Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) and HealthLink secured an Order from the US District Court in Massachusetts requiring Salem Harbor power plant owner Dominion to shut down all four units at the 60-year-old coal-fired power plant by 2014. In bringing a clear end to the prolonged decline of Salem Harbor Station, this settlement ushers in a new era of clean air, clean water and clean energy for the community of Salem, MA, and for New England as a whole.
Why buy when you can save? Power saved through energy efficiency is widely available, clean, and costs approximately one half to one third the cost of buying electricity from a power plant.
It’s constant, it’s overwhelming, and it’s likely never to go away. What is it? It’s information overload.
For those of you following Maine Governor Paul LePage’s assault on the state’s environmental protections, check out this op-ed by CLF Maine Director Sean Mahoney, which appeared June 3 in the Bangor Daily News.
CLF Director of Clean Energy and Climate Change N. Jonathan Peress appeared on an NHPR segment yesterday to discuss the possibility of state energy utility PSNH increasing the price of power for its consumers. He argued that the proposed price increases are the result of PSNH’s struggle to cover increasing costs of their aging facilities.
CLF intervened today in proceedings regarding the proposed Northern Pass electricity supply and transmission project in New Hampshire. The project, which involves creating 180 miles of new transmission lines in the state and installing new transmission infrastructure in the White Mountain National Forest, is intended to import 1,200 megawatts (MW) of electricity generated in Canada by Hydro-Quebec, the Canadian public utility.