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Rebecca Stanfield’s Blog

New Report: Illinois Energy Bills Larded-Up with Springfield Coal Giveaways

Rebecca Stanfield

Posted May 14, 2012 in Curbing Pollution, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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Today we are releasing a new report authored by long-time Illinois consumer advocate Marty Cohen, who estimates that givewaways to coal plant developers approved or under consideration in Springfield will cost our state's households and businesses $8 billion over the first ten years of the projects operations.  Each household will pay a premium on their bills adding up to $1413 over ten years if all three plants move forward.

The three plants analyzed are owned respectively by Leucadia and Power Holdings, both of which have already been given legislative approval, and Tenaska, whose Taylorville Energy Center is under consideration by a House committee this week.  All three bills force our utilities to enter into long-term contracts for the power at above-market rates.

NRDC is challenging the air permit for Tenaska's plant in large part because it does not require the plant to sequester its carbon emissions, and would allow it to emit as much as 5 million tons of this pollution each and every year. 

Tenaska has been trying for years to secure legislation allowing it to move forward with guaranteed revenues from Illinois ratepayers, when we could meet our energy needs with much cleaner resources at a lower cost.  We urge the General Assembly to reject this again this year, and we hope it will be the last of this project and others like it.

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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