Lawrence Soper: Impacts of new bill
March 30, 2010
To the editor:
By the sound of it, the Clean Air-Clean Jobs Act makes people think of clean air and creating new jobs.
Since Xcel Energy has taken over the Colorado Public Utilities Commission, it has requested and received more rate increases than any other energy company in the country.
The company's record will show it never asked for slight rate increases. Converting current generating plants to natural gas only will increase rates to the consumer for both natural gas that we heat our homes with but also will increase rates for the electricity produced by natural gas powered plants.
Natural gas is more expensive than coal and it will take a lot of natural gas to produce the same amount of electrical power.
Coal is cheaper and emissions from coal can be controlled for less money than it will cost to convert these plants to natural gas.
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Coal production is also a big industry in this area that will have a major impact on the local economy. Any jobs created by this new bill only will be temporary jobs for the few people it will take to convert these power plants to natural gas.
We are at a time in history when we focus on what we hear our political leaders are saying. We should be focusing more on what they are doing than what they are saying. Clean Air-Clean Jobs sounds good, but at what cost and how many more rate increases will it mean for Xcel Energy?