Your article on Aug. 11, 2015, made some very good points as to how taxes and regulations can lead to major problems in the cost and efficiency in the PJM Interconnection system.
The PJM system was developed by electric utilities in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland and other states with good cooperation and hard work over a long period of time.
It is so reliable that we take it for granted. Just plug your battery charger into the wall outlet, charge your battery, put it into your phone and you can do wonders with your new phone.
The generation units and the PJM system improved by continued use of new technology. It made Pennsylvania the second largest electric power producing state in the nation. Mine mouth coal fired plants built in the 1960s and nuclear units in the 1970s and ’80s supplied the growing base load.
This led to a significant number of jobs in Pennsylvania, many of which are still in place today. The continuing use of new technology led to a significant increase in manufacturing jobs in the country.
Increased regulations have slowed the replacement of the older units, which has caused a loss of manufacturing jobs. The older units will be retired due to cost to maintain and cost to meet new regulations. This will cause a significant loss of jobs in generation and coal mining in Pennsylvania. The PJM system can be maintained by adding gas turbine generators in the right locations. It will require miles of new gas pipeline to do this and will make a lot of people unhappy.
Your “Gas, power march together” article on Aug. 20, 2015, identifies that big change will be required to implement the increase in gas-fueled power plants in our state. Pipelines will bring about big changes in our landscape. Cost of electric will increase due to the step change in natural gas fuel used in generating electricity in our state.
Lack of pipe to deliver fuel and lack of generation capacity can lead to rolling blackouts. The New England states were very close to rolling blackouts in the 2014 winter.
It just might be that the use of our natural resources is a bigger concern than our fear of global warming.
I believe that we need to continue to use coal and nuclear fuel to produce our base load electricity. This will extend our natural gas (which we really do not know how much we have)capabilities out for our children and grandchildren. This will allow them to deal with the climate changing that has occured around here for a few million years.
If we put a severance tax on gas production, I propose that since we are the second largest electric generating state in the nation that we do a study to determine if using natural gas to produce most of our electricity is the right thing to do.
See the article here.
- On September 26, 2015