The State Corporation Commission (SCC) is reviewing Dominion’s plan for Virginia’s energy future — known as the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) — and they are seeking input from Virginians until September 18, 2017.
If you’ve seen Dominion Energy’s website or ads lately, you might think the company produces a lot of solar power. Don’t be fooled. Dominion’s long-term plan relies mostly on more dirty fossil fuels. The plan would increase climate pollution and lead to higher electricity bills.
In its plan, Dominion vastly overestimates future electricity demand to justify its preference for “cheap” natural gas. Yet experts estimate that building the company’s proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline would actually increase customer costs by up to $2.36 billion. Meanwhile, the company restricts the amount of solar that can be added to the grid and pays little attention to the benefits of energy efficiency, distributed solar or wind energy.
If Dominion has its way, we’ll have an outdated electric system that relies on fossil fuels like coal and fracked gas, results in carbon emissions and air and water pollution, and ignores the benefits of clean and cost-effective renewable energy sources. And Virginia will continue to lag behind its neighbors, like North Carolina, in terms of installed solar resources.
Now is the time for Virginia to invest in a clean energy economy. Prices for wind and solar energy have never been lower. Solar and energy efficiency in particular are creating far more jobs than coal, oil and natural gas nationwide. But Dominion plans to invest predominantly in fracked-gas pipelines and power plants.
While Dominion claims a commitment to clean energy in Virginia, the IRP falls disappointingly short. We need to let the Commission know that Virginians want Dominion to incorporate more clean energy sources like wind and solar, not lock our state into another half-century of fossil fuel burning.
Both the Sierra Club and Appalachian Voices have petition pages where you can submit your comments: