Yaw: Shapiro Energy Plan Ignores Looming Crisis

HARRISBURG – State Sen. Gene Yaw (R-23), chair of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, issued the following statement in response to Gov. Shapiro’s energy plan announced earlier today:

“While touting Pennsylvania’s legacy as an energy leader that once fueled the industrial revolution, Gov. Shapiro appears to be adopting the same misguided policies of his predecessor by imposing a RGGI-like, job-killing carbon tax on electric generation and other mandates. The Governor left out the real crisis we are facing in the next 10 years – the generation of baseload electricity.

“Our grid is currently stable; however, by 2028 increased demand and lack of reliable thermal replacement generation will promote the collapse of the already strained electric grid. To illustrate this point, over the next few years, we are expected to lose 40,000 MWs of reliable, baseload power from the PJM grid, of which about 10,000 MWs comes from Pennsylvania. The bulk of the loss is due to policy reforms, such as those recommended by the governor. Any statewide carbon tax or “AEPS revamp” proposal sends a terrible message to potential investors considering Pennsylvania for investments in reliable, baseload generation, and instead exacerbates the potentially catastrophic crisis heading our way. Construction of a gas-fired combined-cycle electric generation facility takes three to five years. Construction of a nuclear electric generation facility takes 15 to 20 years. In order to meet the projected demand in the 2028 timeframe, we should have 10 combined cycle generation facilities under construction right now.   We don’t, and we are running out of time. Unfortunately, the governor said nothing to address this issue.

“Furthermore, while most states are cutting CO2 simply by slashing generation and importing energy from other states, including from Pennsylvania, we increased electric generation and reduced overall CO2 emissions from 2018-23. In fact, Pennsylvania has reduced its carbon emissions from power generation by nearly 44% since 2005 – far surpassing any other power producing state in the nation, all while being a leading net exporter of electricity.  That should be praised.  However, we are now at a tipping point. Since 2023, we have seen premature closures of thermal generation and lack of replacements.  We should not be apologizing for our energy generation and continuing to entertain misguided, misinformed, and reckless policies that don’t look at the big picture. In less than a decade, demand will exceed our generation capacity. We need to address the shortfall, not ignore it.”

For more state-related news and information, constituents can visit Senator Yaw’s website at www.SenatorGeneYaw.com or follow him on Facebook and Twitter @SenatorGeneYaw.

Elizabeth Weitzel

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