Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The Future of Natural Gas | Climate Etc.

The Climate Etc. blog has an entry primarily on natural gas issues in the US, but it can double as a good explanation on why North American electricity prices aren't likely to move higher in the foreseeable future.

The Future of Natural Gas | Climate Etc.:

"In 2009, well before the latest EPA regulations, Colorado was struggling to meet environmental air quality standards. Recognizing the advantages of natural gas over coal, Governor Bill Ritter created a coalition of gas producers, environmental groups, Republican and Democratic legislators, and Xcel Energy, Colorado’s dominant electric utility. Dogs and cats, working together…
After analyzing the costs of retrofitting existing coal plants with stricter pollution controls, the coalition proposed replacing several aging coal plants with natural gas generators. In spite of a $2 million campaign by the coal lobby, the bill passed by overwhelming majorities in Colorado’s Senate and House in a remarkably short 17 days. The net impact on consumer bills is estimated to be less than 2%, but that cost is $225 million less than retrofitting existing coal plants. Since then Xcel has expanded the plan from 3 to 5 plants. Similar opportunities exist in other states, if we can just learn to work together."

The full article can be read at Climate Etc.

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