Some within the environmental community will disagree with me, and they would probably tell you the law was so bad that it should be repealed and replaced with a new more effective clean energy standard. I would agree if that were a possibility but, it is not.
Here are a couple of the realities which come to fruition if Virginia's voluntary RPS is repealed:
First, investments in clean, renewable energy are now subject to the strictest interpretation of the Virginia State Corporation Commission. The commission has never approved a full clean energy proposal put forward by Dominion. It has limited the size of the utility's energy efficiency and solar programs.
On the environment, Romney really ignored mentioning the environment by name. What he did say was that the federal government should give regulatory authority to the states in as many areas as possible. That is code for letting the states enforce clean air and clean water laws.
So, why shouldn't states be the ones that bottom-line the quality of the air we breathe and the water we drink?
That's actually pretty straightforward if we look at the Commonwealth of Virginia. For starters, states don't have the money to enforce environmental safeguards. It's regular that when budgets are cut in the states that Departments of Environmental Protection see massive cuts. As recently as the Warner administration, Virginia's DEQ was cut by 16% in one year.
In 2009, Virginians voted for Bobs for Jobs because he avoided all discussion of social issues. He promised to put Virginia back to work by making us the energy capital of the east coast and investing in transportation. People bought that story and he won.
The following three years have been an abhorrent failure for Bob's promises. Virginia has fallen further behind in the race to be the east coast energy leader, and we have mortgaged our future to accomplish nothing on transportation.
On energy, Bob claimed to support an all-of-the-above approach. It seems that all-of-the-above only meant to Bob McDonnell if I can get oil, coal and gas then I'll consider solar, wind and efficiency. Since President Obama took action to protect the air we breathe from toxic pollution, Bob has chosen to blame the president for his failures.