Sierra Club Responds to NV Energy Proposal for Retiring Coal Plants
Coal retirements promising but questions remain on mix of renewables, energy efficiency, and gas
Carson City – A proposal being rolled out by NV Energy today in the state legislature would set new retirement dates for Nevada’s coal plants, including speeding up retirement of the controversial Reid Gardner plant. The legislation also increases new renewable energy and allows NV Energy to build several new gas plants.
In response, the Sierra Club Energy Task Force issued the following statement:
The Sierra Club welcomed news of NV Energy’s intention to retire the Reid Gardner coal plant by 2017 and to end its contract with Navajo Generating Station’s coal-fired power by 2019. The Club also expressed support for adding new renewable energy projects to replace some of the coal power.
“With this legislation, NV Energy unequivocally acknowledges that Nevada wants and needs to leave coal behind. Closing the Reid Gardner coal plant would clean up Nevada’s air pollution and reduce health risks for thousands of Nevadans,” said Jane Feldman, Sierra Club state Energy Task Force chair. “We strongly support closing that plant and fully cleaning up the site, including the polluted lands, air and water near the Moapa Band of Paiutes’ Moapa River Reservation.”
“Replacing that coal power with renewable energy will create jobs for Nevadans and a better future for our children. We are pleased to see additional renewable energy called for in this bill,” said Feldman.
However, Sierra Club said that concerns remain over NV Energy’s proposals to build new natural gas plants and suggested that more emphasis on energy efficiency and renewable energy is needed. “Energy efficiency can put money right back into the pockets of consumers every month,” said Feldman. “And if we build more renewable energy, costs remain stable for decades because the fuel costs for solar, wind and geothermal are free,” she continued.
Sierra Club is continuing to study the bill and will provide detailed input to the legislature as these proposals move forward.