Perry could use obscure provisions of laws that stakeholders, including natural gas, renewables, oil and energy efficiency, have warned against
Washington (May 14, 2018) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), a member of the Environment and Public Works Committee and Chair of the Senate Climate Task Force, today sent a letter to the Department of Energy urging the agency not to misuse obscure provisions of the Defense Production Act of 1950 or the Federal Power Act to issue rules that artificially and unnecessarily prop up coal and nuclear plants that are no longer competitive, under the guise of an emergency. A previous DOE proposal with a similar aim was already unanimously rejected by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) earlier this year. Last week, Secretary Perry testified before the House Science Committee that DOE is “looking very closely at [a] number of ways to approach this.” In his letter, Senator Markey urges Secretary Perry not to misuse these provisions of law to artificially subsidize coal and nuclear generation.
“FERC has already determined that out-of-market payments or subsidies are not appropriate for generators that are not competitive, and the orderly retirement of numerous power plants due to economic reasons does not constitute an ‘emergency’ threat to national security,” writes Senator Markey in his letter to Secretary of Energy Rick Perry.
A copy of Senator Markey’s letter can be found HERE.
“The only emergency here is for the bottom lines of companies that made bad bets on coal generation,” said Senator Markey. “The Energy Department should not misuse obscure provisions of old laws to artificially prop up old energy sources at the expense of consumers. Secretary Perry needs to do the responsible thing and leave well enough alone.”