(INDIANAPOLIS) – There’s disagreement over how best to smooth the transition from coal to clean energy.
Valparaiso Representative Ed Soliday (R) says natural gas and renewables are the energy of the future. But he says those sources don’t yet have the capacity to replace coal completely, and says utilities need to have a reliable source of energy to keep your lights on until that transition is complete.
Hoosier Environmental Council director Jesse Kharbanda says he’s worried Soliday’s bill would give utilities an incentive to prop up coal-burning plants which are ready for retirement.
Environmental groups prefer a Senate revision of the bill passed by the House. It gives coal miners priority for retraining and requires notice before closing coal plants. But it drops a provision giving utilities a one-time option to stockpile up to three months’ worth of coal, to cushion the blow from a warm winter and declining sales.