Dec. 11, 2017
FERC Delay on Department of Energy Coal and Nuclear Bailout Punts Action
Statement of Tyson Slocum, Energy Program Director, Public Citizen
Note: U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry is giving the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) until Jan. 10 to finalize his grid plan, meant to boost coal and nuclear power plants, after FERC's new chairman, Kevin McIntyre, requested a 30-day extension. Perry said FERC’s inability to meet the original Dec. 11 deadline means that “the security of the nation’s electric grid will continue to be at risk.”
The decision by FERC Chairman Kevin McIntyre to postpone action for 30 days on the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) multibillion-dollar bailout of uneconomic coal and nuclear power plants doesn’t go nearly far enough. The factual record overwhelmingly demonstrates that FERC simply should dismiss the entire proceeding.
Perry granted the 30-day extension with the caveat that “the security of the nation’s electric grid will continue to be at risk.” If our grid was truly at risk by the closure of failing coal and nuclear plants, then any delay of action would be reckless. The fact remains that the retirement of uneconomical coal and nuclear does not threaten the reliability of our national grid. The disingenuous rationale for propping up these power plants has been dismissed time and again. It is outrageous that Perry continues to perpetuate this lie and that FERC continues to entertain this cockamamie proposal.