Georgia Power Asks Regulators to Approve Clean, Affordable Wind Power for Customers
March 13, 2014 (ATLANTA) – Today, Georgia Power executives argued in favor of bringing new clean, cheap wind energy to Georgia consumers at the state Public Service Commission (PSC). Georgia Power is asking the Commission to approve two contracts to import 250 megawatts (MW) of wind power, enough to power more than 50,000 Georgia homes. If the PSC votes to approve the contracts, wind will power Georgia homes and businesses for the first time starting in 2016.
“These wind proposals are the right choice for Georgians. The Sierra Club’s members and supporters urge the Commission to approve these contracts to help Georgia’s environment, and our pocketbooks,” said Seth Gunning, Beyond Coal organizer with Sierra Club. “Wind power is clean and affordable: it doesn’t produce toxic air and water pollution and there is no possibility of cost-overruns. Bottomline: these wind power contracts are a win-win for Georgia.”
The two contracts under consideration will import power from Blue Canyon Wind Farm, the nation’s largest wind farm near Lawton, Oklahoma. The project, jointly owned by Infigen Energy and Horizon Wind Energy, has been producing clean energy since December 2003 and has been expanded multiple times. According to Georgia’ Power’s analyses, these wind purchases are cheaper than other forms of electric generation already on the grid and will put downward pressure on rates. In fact, wind power projects in multiple states have lowered rates for consumers or kept rates from increasing.
“Wind-generated energy has many benefits that make it an attractive, low-risk addition to Georgia’s energy mix. Wind – unlike many other forms of energy generation – uses no water to produce energy,” said Ashten Bailey, staff attorney at GreenLaw. “Wind also keeps rates stable, as there are no variable costs for fuel. Wind is free, just like the sun.”
GreenLaw, on behalf of the Sierra Club, intervened in the proceeding where Georgia Power has asked the Public Service Commission for approval of these contracts. A decision is expected on May 20, 2014.
GreenLaw is GreenLaw is a Georgia-based nonprofit law firm serving environmental and community organizations that have been adversely impacted by pollution. Since 1992, GreenLaw has achieved these goals by providing free, high-quality legal and technical assistance to environmental organizations and community groups throughout Georgia. For more information, visit www.greenlaw.org and follow @greenlaw_GA on Twitter.
The Sierra Club is America's largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization. Inspired by nature, we are 2.4 million of your friends and neighbors, working together to protect our communities and the planet. Read more at http://www.sierraclub.org.
Ashten Bailey, GreenLaw Jenna Garland