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Energy

The Ohio House has dramatically changed the comprehensive energy bill that would bailout the state’s nuclear power plants and repeal alternative energy mandates. 

Ohio lawmakers are debating a plan that would bail out the state’s two aging nuclear energy plants by charging customers more. Gov. Mike DeWine isn’t weighing in on that proposal. But on this "Earth Day," he says nuclear energy needs to be a part of Ohio’s short-term energy landscape.

solar panel
Credit Sergey Edentod/SHUTTERSTOCK

AEP Ohio has announced a commitment to eventually double wind and solar generation in Ohio. The proposal is the next step in their plan to move away from coal power.

Supporters say the plan sends a signal around the country to clean energy companies. Neil Waggoner, with the Sierra Club, which agreed to support the plan in 2015, says AEP’s project and the state’s renewable energy standards are a signal to solar and wind developers.

PUCO recently heard public testimony in Columbus on a proposed AEP Ohio rate-change proposal.
PUCO Instagram page

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio is hosting public hearings this week on Dayton Power & Light’s application to boost electricity rates. The company applied to increase rates almost three years ago.

DP&L’s proposal would increase a mandatory fee on all customer electricity bills. 

Jason Goins / WYSO

The Wind Energy industry has been taking off in the Midwest. The number of wind farms in the region has doubled since 2011. In Ohio though, new development worth up to 1.6 billion dollars has stalled because of the debate over set-back rules, the guidelines that govern the distance between wind farms and property.

Rick Willoughby / Flickr Creative Commons

Today sustainability commentator Bob Brecha tackles a thorny question: how much energy does it take to make wind turbines and solar panels.

Here’s a scary thought: What if all the effort being put into new wind turbines and solar panels is a waste of time and money because they don’t create as much energy as it takes to build and install them.  And because of that, maybe they don’t help reduce greenhouse gas emissions either. 

Large Solar Farms Proposed In Three Ohio Counties

Jul 17, 2017
Dan Konik

A couple of large wind farms have cropped up in Ohio over the past couple of years, but the state still hasn’t seen a big development with solar power. That could change very soon with not one but three big solar farms in the works.

The three plans, which have been submitted for approval by state regulators, would generate between 125-150 megawatts each.

To get an idea of just how big this is, the largest solar generator right now is a 20 megawatt facility in Bowling Green.

The three plants would be in Brown, Hardin and Vinton counties.

Havana, Cuba
Pedro Szekely / Flickr Creative Commons

All the nations of the world need to make decisions about how to use resources but in developing countries, trade-offs between economic growth and spending on health and education are especially challenging. On Friday, President Donald Trump is expected to announce changes in U.S. policy toward Cuba. Commentator Bob Brecha was in Cuba early this month and has some thoughts about how the Cuban government is making choices about economic growth and sustainability.

Commentary: EPA and Us

Apr 25, 2017
Paul A. Fagan / Flickr Creative Commons

After World War II, American industry grew rapidly, leading to not only unprecedented wealth and a growing middle class, but also to serious negative effects on the environment.  As industry and population expanded, we learned through poisoned rivers and unbreathable air that there are limits to the capacity of the environment to absorb our waste.  The Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1970 with strong bipartisan support for efforts to remediate heavily polluted urban air and waterways across the country.

Ohio Utility Company Aims To Raise Rates

Apr 19, 2017
Duke Energy / Flickr Creative Commons

State energy regulators are looking over a new plan, proposed by AEP, that would allow the utility company to increase rates on customer electric bills. 

AEP is asking to increase a certain line item on electric bills by 120%. That "customer charge" would go up about $10 more a month. Rachel Belz with the advocacy group Ohio Citizen Action notes AEP just tried and failed to raise rates to help its struggling coal plants.

“They just keep reaching right into the pockets of their residential customers.”

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