Utility Customer Fuel and Emissions Disclosure

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This article is part of the Coal Issues portal on SourceWatch, a project of CoalSwarm and the Center for Media and Democracy. See here for help on adding material to CoalSwarm.

In Colorado, environmentalists are working to introduce legislation requiring utility companies to disclose fuel and emissions information to customers. The legislation would require utilities to put fuel, emissions information, and plain-language explanations of fees for fossil fuels in easy-to-read graphs on customer bills.[1]

The proposed bill would require utilities to:[1]

  • Disclose fuel mix for the utility (i.e., the percentage of electricity derived from coal, natural gas, wind, solar, etc.)
  • Include emissions for the utility, broken out by fuel type
  • Use clearly-labeled color graphs and pie charts
  • Include plain-language explanations of “adjustment factors” added to customer bills, such as fees for energy efficiency, renewable energy standard, and fossil fuel costs
  • Include baseline comparisons of regional emissions of carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, mercury, and other regulated pollutants, by fuel source
  • Include baseline information to enable customers to compare household use to the national average

Groups Promoting Disclosure

  • Regulatory Assistance Project - Provides research on all things about electric regulation, utilities, demand side management (energy efficiency) and resource planning (that's utility-speak for permitting new power plants, whether coal, natural gas, solar thermal, etc.). RAP is made up of retired former regulators, and the depth of knowledge is stunning. They will make free presentations to regulator commissions all over the U.S.

Resources

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Comments of Nancy LaPlaca per decision CO8-1198 for December 2, 2008 Hearing, Colorado PUC, November 25, 2008.

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