Gordon wants ‘reliable’ fossil fuel energy sources, says Rocky Mountain Power too focused on renewables
CASPER, Wyo. — Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon’s office said in a press release on Friday that the governor is pushing for “reliable” fossil fuel energy sources and has concerns about the direction Rocky Mountain Power seems to be taking.
The press release comes after Rocky Mountain Power released its Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) this week.
“While we are still reviewing the document, it seems to fly in the face of the expectations of many in Wyoming,” Gordon said in the release. “I continue to support an ‘all the above’ energy strategy, and Rocky Mountain Power is clearly limiting their options by focusing on intermittent sources of generation such as wind and solar, and banking on technologies not yet fully proven, such as batteries and nuclear.”
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“There are multiple sources of fossil energy that are proven with similar opportunities for technological advancement that can make for a stronger, more reliable grid.”
Gordon said that Rocky Mountain Power customers in Wyoming and other states need to be able to rely on the ability to have electricity 24 hours a day.
“True baseload power will not have gaps in the power supply that accompany the times when the wind doesn’t blow, the sun doesn’t shine and the batteries run out,” Gordon said.
While Rocky Mountain Power’s IRP indicates the company is thinking about some switchover to natural gas, Gordon said he doesn’t think this is sufficient.
“We must maintain the use of coal through CO2 capture,” Gordon said. “It is interesting that the IRP pins so much hope on huge amounts of battery storage without regard to life-cycle CO2 costs.”
“It is encouraging that the legislation I advocated for is driving Rocky Mountain Power to analyze some of their units for carbon capture. I hope this is just the beginning of such analysis and they will seriously factor in the cost of the loss of reliable, dispatchable power by pinning so much hope on renewables.”
Gordon said that he appreciates Rocky Mountain Power’s modeling of a proposed Natrium nuclear reactor to be built in Wyoming.
“Nuclear power is an important component of any energy future, and I am delighted that Wyoming will factor large in this endeavor,” Gordon said. “No doubt the Wyoming Public Service Commission will dive into details and provide an analysis on the effects of the IRP. I look forward to their findings.”
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