Home Energy and Environment NRDC Utterly Demolishes Dominion’s Error-Ridden, Flawed, “Gold-plated Electricity Boondoggle”

NRDC Utterly Demolishes Dominion’s Error-Ridden, Flawed, “Gold-plated Electricity Boondoggle”


How horrible is state-coddled monopoly Dominion “Global Warming Starts Here” Power? In addition to destroying Virginia’s environment, buying up/corrupting our government and doing everything they can to delay rapid clean energy scaling in our state, Dominion can’t even produce an “Integrated Resource Plan” (IRP) — the company’s core, long-term energy plan — that makes any sense whatsoever. Instead, as a new analysis by NRDC explains, Dominion has come out with a monstrosity that is “chock-full of errors, flaws, and misjudgments…all about dramatically boosting company profits by asking its hundreds of thousands of Virginia electricity customers to pay for unnecessary and overpriced construction.

A few “highlights” from Dominion’s disastrous, would-be-laughable-if-it-weren’t-so-harmful IRP include:

  • Dominion wants “another new natural gas plant on top of the 3 large new multi-billion dollar ones customers are already paying for (when building no new plants at all would be sufficient to comply).”
  • Dominion also is pushing for what would be “by far the biggest of these sticker-shockers, a brand new nuclear unit,” even though it “is not only entirely unnecessary, but would be so expensive that virtually no one else in America is seriously proposing to build one.”
  • “Dominion’s analysis forgets that their regulators—both at the SCC and at the DEQ—are obligated to protect Virginians’ health and their pocketbooks. Dominion’s proposal does neither.”
  • “In proposing an expensive $13 billion dollar IRP to reduce total carbon pollution, Dominion overlooks all the analysis already done that shows that to be the exact opposite of what is needed.”
  • Dominion commits a huge error: “Dominion appears to be analyzing a Clean Power Plan that is, simply put, not the one that currently exists for Virginia, nor the one that has already been more accurately analyzed by others.”
  • Is Dominion really this stupid and incompetent about their own freakin’ business? On second thought, when you read this, you might very well conclude that they know EXACTLY what they’re doing! “Dominion’s IRP disregards the existence of one of the largest machines built by humans—the interstate electricity grid—in their suggestion that ratepayers pay for so many unnecessary new plants...Dominion’s IRP proposes so many new builds that the flow of cheaper electricity into the state would essentially halt, and the Commonwealth would then instead buy power exclusively supplied by Dominion, at a higher cost. The net result: Virginians’ electricity bills go way up.”
  • All the other ones are really bad, but this last one might be the worst of all, given that energy efficiency is BY FAR the biggest “bang for the buck” when it comes to energy, pollution reduction, etc.  This one also really highlights how completely the General Assembly has failed when it comes to energy policy here in Virginia. “Dominion’s analysis also overlooks the ability to utilize energy efficiency to obviate the need to build entire new plants. At a dismal 0.02% annual electricity savings, Virginia currently ranks 47th in the nation for energy efficient reductions of energy waste, far behind every neighboring state and every southern state except the Pelican State. Dominion proposes to continue that lackluster performance, by reducing cumulative energy demand over the next 15 years by only 0.64%. In contrast, an achievable, moderate ramp up to just 1% per year would ultimately result in a cumulative 6.94% decrease in demand in 2030.
  • Finally, this might explain a lot of the above — it’s all about maximizing the amount of $$$ coming in to Dominion under the antiquated, dying, top-down monopoly utility model they’ve been operating under for decades. “In filling a Christmas tree of an energy plan that would sink $13 billion of unnecessary steel in the ground, Dominion is asking their regulators to willfully disregard their least-cost principles.”

Bottom line: Not only should Gov. McAuliffe “disregard” this beyond-laughable plan from hell, he should tear it up, piss on it, burn it, then throw the smouldering ashes in Dominion CEO Tom Farrell’s smug face and tell him where to shove it. Now let me tell you how I REALLY feel. Argh.


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