|Governor Wolf and his Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) are unilaterally moving forward to implement a new, additional tax on energy production in Pennsylvania by entering the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), despite bipartisan opposition from the General Assembly, the Governor’s own advisory boards, and the general public.
The regulation is now before the Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) and they are accepting comments from the public. The letter sent on this platform will be submitted as an official comment to IRRC.
Governor Wolf’s tax will lead to the immediate closure of several power plants in our commonwealth, resulting in the direct elimination of thousands of family sustaining jobs. The RGGI tax will also increase the cost of electricity for all energy consumers by more than $2 billion. Residential households, including low and fixed income families, especially seniors, will see their electric bills increase by up to 18 percent, according to data released by PJM, Inc., the Energy Information Agency and Penn State. The adverse impact that a carbon tax would have on the greater economy of Pennsylvania is significant. Aside from the thousands of jobs lost at shuttered power plants, even more would be lost in manufacturing plants, transportation logistics servicing power plants and manufacturers, producers of raw materials and manufactured products and raw materials, vendor services, and all the jobs that support these core industrial activities. Entire communities will be harmed due to the loss of the indirect and direct jobs, all because of Governor Wolf’s unilateral action.
Pennsylvania continues to witness the positive environmental impacts that clean, reliable, and affordable energy provides in a deregulated electricity market. Pennsylvania is already ahead of the carbon dioxide emission reduction goals established under Governor Wolf’s Climate Action Plan. In contrast, there are no environmental benefits from joining RGGI. DEP and other RGGI supporters acknowledge that up to 99 percent of all carbon dioxide and other pollutant reductions from Pennsylvania plant closures will be offset by increased emissions in non-RGGI states, like West Virginia and Ohio.
Governor Wolf’s RGGI proposal is all economic pain for no environmental gain.
Please take a moment to write to IRRC and make your voice heard.
PLEASE TAKE NOTE: There is a customizable section in the letter. Please let the regulators know about you – where you work, what you do, how energy production affects your life and livelihood. The more personalized the letter is, the more effective your advocacy will be.