Sierra Club report blasts utilities for not doing enough to end coal use

 

Some utilities in Oklahoma, Arkansas and other states don’t fare well in a new report card issued by the Sierra Club which graded them on their progress toward climate goals and eliminating use of coal-fired generators.

Entitled “The Dirty Truth about Utility Climate Pledges, the report claimed that of 50 major utilities that generated 43% of the nation’s electricity, they have committed only to retire 25% of their coal generation by 2030.

The club’s report said the 20 companies that generated the most power from coal have only committed to retire 17% of their remaining coal generation by 2030. They included Ameren Missouri, Evergy Metro or KCP&L (Kansas City) and the Nebraska Public Power District.

“Utilities across the country are failing to decarbonize in the timeframe that matters. By keeping coal plants running, planning to construct new gas plants, and failing to build out clean energy at the necessary scale and pace, these utilities are locking us into climate disaster,” charged the Sierra Club’s report.

The report pointed out that OGE Energy Corp in Oklahoma expects to reduce carbon emissions by 50% by 2030.

The report also said of the 50 utilities most received a failing grade. Public Service Company of Oklahoma received the highest grade of any of the 50 utilities, scoring an 87 out of a possible 100 points.

Some of those receiving a failing grade from the environmental group included Oklahoma Gas and Electric, Evergy Kansas South/Kansas Gas and Electric, Westar Energy, Nebraska Public Power District, Evergy Missouri West and the Lower Colorado River Authority.

The report was also critical of utilities still building gas plants including Entergy Arkansas.

“Utilities are making things worse by continuing to plan for and build even more gas plants,” alleged the Sierra Club. “New gas generation increases emissions and misdirects funds that would be better spent on clean energy.

But some of the utilities named in the report defended their positions, according Utility Dive.

Click here for the Utility Dive report.

 

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