SB 5116 Passed in the 2019 Legislature is a concern to utilities and energy providers so says Sen Doug Ericksen
The measure requires early termination of major sources of baseload power and the complete elimination of natural gas by 2045.
Senator Doug Ericksen of the 42nd District has called for these concerns to be addressed by the Energy committee in this fall’s hearings.
- Eliminating baseload generating capacity without planning for its replacement risks supply shortages, even blackouts in the dead of winter.
- Eliminating natural gas removes a crucial backstop for intermittent windpower.
- If new plants are built, time-consuming regulatory hurdles and environmental opposition will make it difficult to construct new transmission lines.
- And costly new state mandates could make development of new power sources unprofitable.
“The Legislature basically told utilities, ‘You do it,’ and now they’re saying they need the Legislature’s help,” Ericksen said. “We should listen to them. And first things first, we need to have this discussion in public, so the people of Washington can see what happens when we legislate first and ask questions later.”