www.mnaction.org Friday, November 28, 2014  

The Path to a Clean Energy Future

You can take action on this alert by reading the information below and following the directions at the bottom.

Issue

Just say “No” to rollbacks on dirty coal. Take action below!

Background

The rollbacks on policies to protect our water, air, and Great Outdoors abound at the State Capitol this year. One of the biggest threats is a bill to lift restrictions on coal pollution.

It doesn’t make sense to encourage more dirty energy when we have worked so hard to increase Minnesota’s investment in clean energy.

In 2007, the Next Generation Energy Act became law with broad, bipartisan support, setting science-based carbon pollution reduction goals. The Act moves Minnesota decisively toward a clean energy future.

A key part of that law is an important anti-backsliding provision that requires companies that invest in new coal to offset any additional carbon pollution by making reductions in carbon emissions in other projects. These offset requirements remain in place until the state completes its plan to meet the pollution reduction goals in the law. Once that plan is in effect the offset requirement no longer applies. To date, Minnesota has not established its plan and the offset requirement remains in effect.

The Senate already passed their dirty coal bill a few weeks ago. Now the House of Representatives is planning to vote on a bill to repeal the Next Generation Energy Act. This is a huge step in the wrong direction for Minnesota because:

Coal is expensive
Over the last decade the costs of coal power have skyrocketed. Between 2001 and 2008, Minnesota coal expenditures nearly doubled in cost, while the amount of energy generated by coal actually decreased.

As the financial viability of coal power declines and plans for new coal projects are scrapped, Minnesota’s utilities are planning a flexible and more economical resource mix to meet the demands of their customers. Relative to other energy resources, coal is sim­ply getting too expensive, carries too high of an environmental price tag and is no longer the preferred resource.

Coal harms our health
Burning coal causes a wide variety of pollutants that negatively affect the health of Minnesotans. According to a 2010 National Academy of Science report, pollution from Minnesota coal plants caused almost $600 million in health costs in 2007. Coal pollutes our air with smog and our fish with mercury.

Coal supports other economies, not Minnesota’s
Minnesota imports all of the coal used in the state’s power plants. About $550 million was sent across our borders to purchase this highly polluting fuel in 2008 alone. Coal plants are losing the cost advantages they once had, as construction, fuel and environmental compliance costs have risen markedly. These are the principal factors that led utility partners to cancel the South Dakota Big Stone II power plant proposal in 2009. The U.S. Energy Information Administration now projects that no new coal projects without carbon capture technology will be built be­fore 2025.

Tell your elected officials to protect Minnesota’s clean energy future by voting “no” on legislation to allow more coal pollution.

More Info

Message To Be Sent To
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Governor
Your State Representative
Message
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Stay on the Path to Clean Energy


Dear Governor,

Keep Minnesota moving forward on clean energy! Vote “NO” on House File 72.

It doesn’t make sense to encourage more dirty energy when we have worked so hard to increase Minnesota’s investment in clean energy.

In 2007, the Next Generation Energy Act became law with broad, bipartisan support, setting science-based carbon pollution reduction goals. The Act moves Minnesota decisively toward a clean energy future.

A key part of that law is an important anti-backsliding provision that requires companies that invest in new coal to offset any additional carbon pollution by making reductions in carbon emissions in other projects. These offset requirements remain in place until the state completes its plan to meet the pollution reduction goals in the law. Once that plan is in effect the offset requirement no longer applies. To date, Minnesota has not established its plan and the offset requirement remains in effect.

Coal is Expensive:
Over the last decade the costs of coal power have skyrocketed. Between 2001 and 2008, Minnesota coal expenditures nearly doubled in cost, while the amount of energy generated by coal decreased. Relative to other energy resources, coal is sim­ply getting too expensive, carries too high of an environmental price tag and is no longer the preferred resource.

Coal harms our health:
Burning coal causes a wide variety of pollutants that negatively affect the health of Minnesotans. According to a 2010 National Academy of Science report, pollution from Minnesota coal plants caused almost $600 million in health costs in 2007.

Coal is bad for Minnesota's economy:
Minnesota imports all of the coal used in the state’s power plants. Approximately $550 million was sent across our borders to purchase this highly polluting fuel in 2008 alone. Coal plants are losing the cost advantages they once had, as construction, fuel and environmental compliance costs have risen markedly.

I urge you to vote "No" on House File 72. Keep Minnesota on the path to a clean energy future.

Sincerely,

Your name and address here


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