After President Obama delivered his latest blueprint on climate change yesterday, utilities responded with their own two cents. The Edison Electric Institute (EEI), an association of shareholder-owned electric companies, issued a statement reflecting on the president's plans.
EEI President Tom Kuhn noted that, while electric utilities both understand and support the importance of addressing climate change, electric companies want to ensure that carbon-cutting policies focused on existing power plants "contain achievable compliance limits and deadlines, minimize costs to customers, and are consistent with the industry's ongoing investments to transition to a cleaner generating fleet and enhanced electric grid."
To do this properly, Kuhn emphasized: "It is also critical that fuel diversity and support for clean energy technologies be maintained, not hindered." Even as the EEI stressed support, it noted that utilities have already made significant advancements. Carbon dioxide emissions currently clock in 15% below 2005 levels, it said, with sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions are down 75% since 1990.
Adding that utilities everywhere are in a state of "major transformation," Kuhn noted that "We look forward to working with the Administration as it further develops its climate plan and with other key stakeholders, including Congress and the states, which will play a critical role in helping to forge workable regulations."
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