Power grab: Utility chiefs say, “Give us the money”
In remarks delivered Tuesday, May 12, at the 11th annual Electric Power Conference & Exhibition in Rosemont, Ill., power industry executives staked their claim to federal revenues from emission allowances.
The Obama administration had proposed to auction off licenses to release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere –licenses to pollute — and use some of the proceeds to fund health care reform. Michael Morris, chairman, president, and CEO of Columbus, Ohio-based American Electric Power, was sharply critical of that proposal.
Morris, as well as representatives of Houston-based Dynergy, Chicago-based Exelon Corp., and San Diego-based Sempra Energy, united in demanding that all funds raised in any auction of emission licenses go into the electric power infrastructure, including construction of new transmission lines and the development of technologies to capture carbon dioxide emissions and contain them underground.
Morris said that American Electric Power has retained Susan Eisenhower, daughter of former President Dwight Eisenhower, and George Pataki, former governor of New York, for lobbying and public relations to inject “more realism and integrity into the Obama administration’s energy and environmental plans.” — Peter Downs (email@example.com)